Dozen is a design collective comprised of the Italian designers Margherita Paleari (born 1982, Milan) and Matteo Facchi (born 1981, Crema). Paleari studied at the Politecnico di Milano, graduating in 2006 with a Master’s degree in Communication Design. As part of the five-year program, she participated in a two-year exchange program, which included stints at the University of Art and Design in Helsinki and at the Cologne International School of Design. Facchi completed his education at the Universitá Catholic del Sacro Cuore di Milano, graduating in 2007 with a Master’s in Liberal Arts. The two met in Milan in 2011 through a communication project in which they were both involved.
Both designers gained industry experience through their own projects before joining forces: Paleari founded her own design studio in 2012 and worked as a communication design consultant for brands such as Moleskine, Armani Dolci, and Mercedes. She has also held teaching positions at Politecnico di Milano and the Domus Academy in Milan. For his part, Facchi worked as business designer and creative director for numerous clients, co-founded the design collective Mamarocket, and initiated the magazine madeinitaly.rocks with Paleari. Facchi and Paleari established Dozen in Milan in 2015. The designers run the studio as a branch of their agency and consultancy Chapter 24 and continue to work on the other branches of their business. During Milan Design Week in 2017, for example, Mamarocket—helmed by the Dozen designers—launched the first issue of Madeinitaly Rocks as a print magazine focusing on Italian design and craft.
Dozen’s approach to design is whimsical, esoteric, sometimes humorous, overtly contemporary and yet firmly based on the traditional Made in Italy values of quality craftsmanship and an appreciation for the handmade. Paleari and Facchi take abstract ideas and translate them into forms that blur the line between art, craft, and design. The WOW (2016) mirrors, for example, are in an unexpected triangular form with a pop of color that transforms the reflective surface into a sort of artwork. Similarly, the Aura Frame (2015) is a stunningly crafted piece of woodwork that essentially elevates the piece of wall it frames to the status of an artwork. As the designers themselves say, “Dozen takes design away from being a science of formal solutions to conceptual or actual problems and makes it, simply put, a design game with magical outcomes.”
Dozen has exhibited work at the SuperDesign Show 2016, at Superstudio in Milan, as well as at Operae Independent Design Festival in Turin, also in 2016, amongst others. The designer duo continues to live and work in Milan.