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Big Italian furniture brands turned out collections at the 55th Milan Furniture Fair that included forgotten or neglected treasures from their archives, along with fresh innovations by the "starchitects" who have infused design with glamour. A record 372,000 people attended the premier event for Italian design and furnishings that ended Sunday. The annual gathering highlights the prowess of Italy's furniture manufacturing sector, which last year reported a 3 percent increase of revenues to nearly 25 billion euros ($28 billion).GENDER BENDING Patricia Urquiola, who was named Cassina's new art director in September, is doing it all: launching her own designs while curating new works from colleagues, and updating the Italian brand's iconic pieces ahead of its 90th anniversary next year.The chair can be paired with an inverted U-shaped ottoman.The Ming chair is among a series of pieces commissioned by Asian designers this year that merge with Poltrona Frau's iconic pieces and contemporary design.The U.S. brand has made some of the world's most distinctive, enduring chair designs, including Ludwig Mies van der Rohe's Barcelona chair.
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