Dezeen Magazine

Remembering Richard Sapper: 9091 kettle for Alessi

In our second movie featuring an iconic Richard Sapper product, Alberto Alessi tells the story behind the late designer's 9091 harmonic whistling kettle (+ movie).

Launched by Italian brand Alessi in 1982, the kettle features two whistles, each tuned to a different note, so that a harmony is produced when water in the kettle boils.

"The idea of Sapper was very clear," Alberto Alessi explains in the movie. "He told me: 'I will design a kettle for you, but it's not enough for me to just design a beautiful kettle. I want to design a kettle that can be multi-sensorial. Not only to the eyes, but also to the ears'."

9090 kettle by Richard Sapper for Alessi

Alessi admits that the whistles do not always work perfectly, but insists that it has nothing to do with the object's functionality.

The German industrial designer died on New Year's Eve, and figures in the design industry have since being paying tribute by posting images of his products to Instagram.

The first of our movies about Sapper's Alessi products focusses on his 9090 espresso maker »