I have never liked smoking. I just don't understand the allure of bathing one's lungs in carcinogenic smoke. One's first cigarette—and the disgust it induces—should be enough to preclude a second one. The act seems so foreign to me. However, I must admit, I really do like many smokers. And I love the accoutrements of smoking: tobacco jars, pipe holders, smoking cabinets, humidors and cigarette cases. And, of course, beautiful ashtrays.
Shown above, a large Italian Modernist ceramic ashtray—impressed, incised and glazed in a "Rimini Blu" glaze. It was designed by Aldo Londi for Bitossi and made in the Sixties. The Bitossi family had been making ceramics in Tuscany since 1871. In 1921, Guido Bitossi founded his own pottery workshop outside of Florence. He mostly made roofing tiles, floor tiles, utilitarian cookware and a small number of "art pottery" pieces. Fortunately, his workshop survived World War Two (many of his competitors were destroyed) and Bitossi was quick to embrace the new Modernism which was au courant. Designer Aldo Londi came aboard, eventually rising to Artistic Director. Under Londi, Bitossi took the lead in supplying Modernist interiors with bold, innovative and colorful ceramic designs. To this day, Bitossi ceramics are the gold standard of Italian Mid-Century Modernist design.
If one must smoke, try to quit. And if you can't quit, I suggest you continue smoking in style. Aldo Londi's ashtray can help.
Click on the photo above to learn more about this handsome Italian ashtray.
Though our Greenwich Village store is now permanently closed, LEO Design is still alive and well! Please visit our on-line store where we continue to sell Handsome Gifts (www.LEOdesignNYC.com).
We also can be found in Canonsburg, Pennsylvania at The Antique Center of Strabane (www.antiquecenterofstrabane.com).
Or call to arrange to visit our Pittsburgh showroom (by private appointment only). 917-446-4248