The porcelain lamp ASHOKA by Ettore Sottsass from 1981 [left] might have been the inspiration for the multicolor block stripes dress by Balenciaga [right].
Ettore Sottsass (1917–2007) was an Italian architect and designer of the late 20th century. His body of designs included furniture, jewellery, glass, lighting and office machine design. In 1981, Sottsass and an international group of young architects and designers, came together to form the Memphis Group. A night of drinking and listening to Bob Dylan’s ‘’Stuck Inside of Mobile With the Memphis Blues Again’’ gave the group its name. Memphis was launched with a collection of 40 pieces of furniture, ceramics, lighting, glass and textiles which featured fluorescent colors, slick surfaces, intentionally lop-sided shapes and squiggley laminate patterns. The group's colourful, ironic pieces were considerably different from his earlier, more strictly modernist work, and that was hailed as one of the most characteristic examples of Post-modernism in design and the arts.
Sottsass described Memphis in a 1986 Chicago Tribune article: "Memphis is like a very strong drug. You cannot take too much. I don't think anyone should put only Memphis around: It's like eating only cake."