alexa Fabrizio Buonamassa Stigliani | Bulgari | Bvlgari | Interview | Horobox

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Fabrizio Buonamassa Stigliani


Did you already start thinking about the gift ideas for your loved ones..? Or a birthday surprise for your girl friend..? Are you going to spoil yourself with a beautiful present for your successful achievements..?

If you are dealing with the same questions, BVLGARI might be your answer.


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Became one with the beautiful capital of Italy – Rome, Bvlgari addresses the luxury aficionados with it’s classic designs and remarkable novelties at the same time.

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Zorlu Center Shopping Mall is an important location for luxury shopping in Istanbul. Being located in one of the best spots of the mall among other important brands, Bvlgari Boutique makes you feel special even before entering in.

We are welcomed with the brand’s Switzerland and Eastern Europe Marketing Manager Mr.Philippe Cretton as we enter the boutique.


After a short while accompanied with a pleasant chat, our valuable guest – Mr.Fabrizio Buonamassa STIGLIANI joins us.

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Born in Naples in 1971, Fabrizo Buonamassa Stigliani studied Industrial Design at the Institute for Industrial Arts of Rome.

During that time he explored the cultural roots of Italian Design, and learned how to look beyond the aesthetics of individual objects, such as a car, a watch or a chair, in order to consider the project in its entirety, appreciating the value of the single parts which together form the final piece.


He began his career at the Fiat Style Centre in Turin, invited by Fiat’s Design Director to work on his graduation thesis during a 6 month stage, after which he was offered a full time position on the very day of his birthday, December 21st 1998.

During the years he spent in Turin, his first experience in industry, he learned to manage projects which were highly complex both in terms of style and manufacturing.

In 2001, driven by the desire to face new challenges and by his lifelong passion for watches, he sent some of his designs to the Bulgari Design Center in Rome. A short time later Paolo Bulgari, CEO and creative driver of the brand, invited Fabrizio to Rome to join the watch design team.


In Fabrizio’s eyes the world of cars and watches share similar attraction and emotions: “The shape of a vehicle must suggest its use, its performance, and in some case a dream; watches have the same goals but with the added, perhaps harder, challenge of fitting all this in a space 40mm across”.

He shares a love of fine cars with Paolo and Nicola Bulgari, with whom from the start he has enjoyed a friendly rapport, imbued with respect.  This culminated in 2007 when they nominated him Director of the Bulgari Watches Design Center, where his mission is to constantly reinterpret Bulgari’s rich stylistic and cultural heritage in a contemporary language in tune with the brand’s DNA.

In 2009, in agreement with the company, Fabrizio decided to move the Design Center to Neuchatel in order to be closer to the heart of watchmaking. This move was necessary to better manage the high level of complexity of the intricate watches that Bulgari has been producing for several years.

Married in 2006, with two children, he shares his love for design with his wife.


Boosting our motivation in such a short notice with his warm and sincere manners, Fabrizio gets ready for our questions:


-               How many people is working at your design department..?

-               Beside our own team we also use contract designers as well. It is essential for us to create our designs from different angles. It is very important that you keep your creativity otherwise you may end up making the very same design after and after. It is hard for me to say an exact number but I might say that our own team varies between 5 to 8 people. As I mentioned before, we have contract consultants from Italy, Switzerland and UK.


-               Design and Production are closely related processes. I met many production executives complain about the designers. Do you consider the production stage while you are working on your designs..?

-               The difference between an artist and a designer is nicely defined in practice here. A sculptor gets a hammer and a piece of marble to make his own design in to a creation. We -the designer- on the other side need to to think about the manufacturability before we start designing. We have to consider various limitations. If we don’t, our design will remain sketches, but not products. While being able to produce in our own facility mostly eases the processes sometime it makes it more difficult. We are able to work in cooperation with the production side. Sometimes we just make a phone call to the production dept., discuss about the difficulties and revise as required. This is very fortunate for us. This is how we managed to design the thinnest caliber ever and produce it.


-              Bvlgari’s current collection consists many beautiful products like jewellery, bags etc. with different designs. Do you get influenced by their style..?

-              Our current collection is very strong. We have the Octo, we have the Bvlgari Bvlgari and one of our greatest products we have The Grand Complication. We are able to produce different type of movements totally in-house in our factory.We aim the best regarding the developments of those current models technically. We are not in a search for different designs in aesthetics wise. We start every coming year’s collection aiming the best upgrade for our product groups.

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-              What made you decide to move the design department to Neuchatel..? What was the best outcome of this decision..?

-              We decided to move our design department from Rome to Neuchatel in order to stay close to the manufacturing side.If you are planning to produce grand complication type watches you have to be close with your manufacturing side.


-               If you would like to merge Bvlgari with an automobile brand, what would be that brand..?

-               Maserati is the perfect partner for Bvlgari. Maserati is an Italian brand with an amazing history, beautiful designs, elegance style and brilliant sense of proportion. Personally I think Maserati offers the perfect balance between a high performance sports car and a stylish luxury car. 


-               Could you please tell us about the up coming designs for near future..? Are you planning to use complicated movements..?

-               We will be focusing on the Octo collection intensively mainly for the design and movement sides. We will also be working on the entire product lines as well.

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-               Do you consider the regional differences while designing a product..?

-               I consider the brand. Irrespectively of the region they live in, all Bvlgari customers share the same taste. We do not produce special products for a specific region. We sometimes design different colors for a market. For instance we have red color dials which are highly praised in our Beijing Boutique as Chinese people love the red.


-              What do you think about smart and/or connected watches..? Would you like to design one..?

-              First of all, it is very important for a designer to know and understand the next using method of a product he is working on. However, I do not believe and electronic product can be classified as a “ luxury item “. A luxury item should preserve it’s value.. Also it should have the ability to be passed from a generation to the next one. The item bears the history and the heritage of the product. On the other side an electronic product gets old in a very short time like six months.

The client profile for those smart/connected watches are different than a luxury watch’s. The young generation may be interested about the useful features and the affordable prices but when they grow up they will mostly appreciate the value of a mechanic luxury watch.


-             Which model would you like to have as a birthday present out of the current Bvlgari collection..?

-             Definitely the Octo. I love the 38mm diameter version with the blue sapphire dial. It’s a very elegant and strong watch. I would also like to say that being in Istanbul for me feels like a birthday present as well. I love the unique bonding of two different continents.


-            Thank you very much for your time.

-            Thank you, it was my pleasure.

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