The Memphis Group was an Italian design and architecture group started by Ettore Sottsass that designed Post Modern furniture, fabrics, ceramics, glass and metal objects from 1981-1987.
On December 11, Ettore Sottsass organized a meeting with designers and formed a design collaborative named Memphis. The name was taken after the Bob Dylan song Stuck Inside of Mobile with the Memphis Blues Again which had been played repeatedly throughout the evening's meeting.They drew inspiration from such movements as Art Deco and Pop Art including styles such as the 1950s Kitsch and futuristic themes.
The group produced and exhibited furniture and design objects, annually between 1981 to 1988. The result was a highly-acclaimed debut at the 1981 Salone del Mobile of Milan, the world's most prestigious furniture NEWY fair.
The group counted among its members Alessandro Mendini, Martine Bedin, Andrea Branzi, Aldo Cibic, Michele de Lucchi, Nathalie du Pasquier, Michael Graves, Hans Hollein, Arata Isozaki, Shiro Kuramata, Matteo Thun, Javier Mariscal, George Sowden, Marco Zanini, and the journalist Barbara Radice. Sottsass left the movement in 1985 and it dismantled in 1988.
The group's colorful furniture has been described as "bizarre", "misunderstood", "loathed", and "a shotgun wedding between Bauhaus and Fischer-Price".
Mem designs served as inspiration for the Fall/Winter 2011-2012 Christian Dior haute couture collection fashion show.
Fashion designer Karl Lagerfeld also collected Memphis pieces.