The interior decoration of ocean liners: A chapter in Italian design history

Francesca Lanz*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


It is widely recognized that the years leading up to the Second World War saw the creation and expansion of Italian design firms and great developments in the culture of Italian design and architecture in general. This ferment fostered new ideas in Italian design and interior architecture during this period and attracted growing attention. In this context, the interior decoration of the great Italian ocean liners played a fundamental role. Their interiors were designed by some of the main figures in Italian architectural history: on the one hand, these projects produced a new naval style; on the other hand, they contained many of the peculiarities of the Italian approach to interior architecture. This article explores the relationship between the design of Italian ocean liners and the development of Italian design. It aims to demonstrate that the interior decoration of these ships not only represented economic opportunities for designers, industry, and various countries, but also led to important opportunities for experimentation within the field of interior architecture, while encouraging the creation of a collaboration between art and industry that still characterizes Italian design today.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)247-269
Number of pages23
JournalInteriors: Design, Architecture, Culture
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2012
Externally publishedYes


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