Gianni Ruffi is an Italian designer who was born in 1938. His work is part of the Italian Radical Design movement of the 1960s and 1970s. Gianni Ruffi's La Cova epitomises one of the most creative periods of Italian 20th Century design, at a time when a Pop aesthetic was sweeping across Europe and the United States. Placed in context alongside other well-known designs such as the baseball glove-shaped Joe chair by De Pas, D'Urbino and Lomazzi and the luscious red lips of the Marilyn sofa created by Studio 65, the current lot represents a new humorous sense of the absurd in furniture design, in which everyday objects were both massively increased in size and radically reinterpreted in their function. Florence-born Ruffi rapidly achieved world-wide recognition in the late 60s with exhibitions in New York and Monaco, as well as many other shows during this period in his native Italy, effectively introducing him to a worldwide audience. La Cova ably captures the mood of the time, combining eloquent design with a dramatic sense of the surreal.