LAUFEN’s reinterpretation of the ground-breaking ILBAGNOALESSI collection

November 2023: LAUFEN is thrilled to introduce the evolution of its iconic ILBAGNOALESSI bathroom collection, designed by Stefano Giovannoni in 2002. LAUFEN has always prioritised pushing the boundaries of ceramic materials, and it was Giovannoni’s ambition to create something unique that led to the original ground-breaking pieces.

Building on this concept, Giovannoni has revisited the ILBAGNOALESSI collection to take advantage of the exciting new possibilities created by SaphirKeramik, a type of ceramic material developed by LAUFEN and known for its exceptional strength and durability. The result is a collection of pieces with a sleeker and lighter aesthetic.

A collection of firsts

When ILBAGNOALESSI debuted over 20 years ago, it ushered in a new generation of sculptural bathroom pieces. It was the first time a washbasin had been made from a single freestanding block and the first toilet to feature a curved lid that seamlessly blended with the oval shape of the bowl. A decade later, in 2010, another significant milestone was reached with the Tuna basin, which is available as either a countertop or vanity basin. The latter is particularly interesting owing to its ceramic border that perfectly aligns with the vanity on which it is placed.

The possibilities of SaphirKeramik

Over twenty years on from the launch of the original collection, Stefano Giovannoni and LAUFEN continue to be driven by a desire to experiment with ceramics. This has led them to revisit ILBAGNOALESSI and embark on the next chapter of the collection using LAUFEN’s SaphirKeramik, which celebrates its 10th anniversary this year.

SaphirKeramik is a blend of ceramic and corundum, a colourless mineral that is a component of sapphires. The resulting material has a flexural strength equal to that of steel, yet it is wafer thin. This thinness provides designers with almost infinite freedom to experiment. Moreoever, thinner and lighter products have environmental benefits, as they require fewer resources, less water and energy to manufacture, and cost less to transport.

The evolution of an icon

The original Tuna basin stands out due to its unique sweeping curves and the technological achievement of forming it from a single piece of ceramic. In the reimagined design, the iconic long, organic shape remains intact, and it’s still one sculptural piece. However, thanks to SaphirKeramik, the basin’s walls have been slimmed down to mere millimetres, most evident where the basin tapers into its straight edge.

Adding colour to the bathroom

Ceramic isn’t the only thing that have developed in the last 20 years – our attitude to colour in the bathroom has also moved on. The original ILBAGNOALESSI collection launched into a world where sanitaryware could be any colour, so long as that colour was white. Today, the bathroom-buying public are willing to experiment a little more and this has inspired LAUFEN and Stefano Giovannoni too. The collection now includes a highly contemporary matt finish across all basins, toilets and bidets in a choice of Matt White, Matt Black and Matt Café.

“The new elements in the ILBAGNOALESSI collection are simply the next chapter in the design story we began back in 2002,” says Emma Mottram, LAUFEN Brand Marketing Manager. “What the 2023 collection shows is how iconic pieces can be reinterpreted using the latest in ceramic material technology to create a stunning evolution in design.”

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