Cover To celebrate the Castiglioni brothers’ legacy, Brionvega has also released a limited-run of the Radiofonografo in a smooth walnut finish (Image: Brionvega)

Designed by the Castiglioni brothers, this iconic radio has withstood the test of time and gained a universal appeal; it counts Kendall Jenner, David Bowie as well as Blackpink’s Jennie and Suzy Bae among its fans

At first glance, the Radiofonografo seems like a shelf. Bearing little resemblance to ordinary radios, the vintage brown-and-white radiogram boasts a unique design that combines the best of style and sound. 

The elegant classic is a celebrated piece loved by many, including celebrities and tastemakers. The vintage radio can be spotted in the interiors (and social media feeds) of models like Kendall Jenner and Korean stars the likes of Suzy Bae and Blackpink member Jennie. The late English musician David Bowie was said to have used the radio every single day to play his music.

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Often hailed for its innovative design, the masterminds behind the radio are none other than visionary Italian architect brothers Achille and Pier Giacomo Castiglioni. The brothers are no stranger to designing a plethora of other timeless favourites, such as the Flos Arco floor lamp. 

The design duo first designed the vintage piece in 1965, for Italian electronics company Brionvega. Officially known as the Radiofonografo rr226, the piece was hailed for its modern industrial design that was rare at that time.

The brothers, true to their passion for experimenting between technology and design, wanted to create a multifaceted piece that was sleek and sophisticated and yet still could produce the best sound. They undertook plenty of research to seek a minimalist design that they deemed the “main engineering component”. 

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The versatile Radiofonografo features a radio AM/FM system and a classic turntable for vinyl. It also comes equipped with adjustable speakers and AUX inputs. Still produced to this by Brionvega according to the Castiglioni brothers’ original design, the radio is able to be connected to other sources, as well as wifi and Bluetooth. 

The adaptable sound modules on the radiogram can also be switched around to best suit your interior style. Each piece is meticulously handcrafted in Italy and takes roughly two months to be produced. Artisans channel their craft through sanding the wood panels, assembling the minuscule components, stand finishing as well as silk screen-printing.

Available in classic white, as well as red and orange editions, Brionvega has also recently introduced a limited-run of the radiogram in a smooth walnut finish.

A design that has stood the test of time, the Radiofonografo is another piece proving the Castiglioni brothers’ remarkable sense of skill and foresight. A true testament of refined Italian design, the radio adds a retro allure to any interior.