Designer and critic, born in Trieste in 1958, he graduated in Architecture in Genoa in 1983. In 1984 he obtained a master's degree in design at the Domus Academy, he worked in Mario Bellini’s atelier and in 1986 he opened his own studio in Milan. From 1986 to 1994 he was editor of Domus magazine, from 1995 to 2007 of Abitare magazine, and from 2010 to 2021 – at his death – columnist in Inventario magazine.
He has published, among others, the works related to the exhibitions he curated: in 2002-03, the great retrospective "Gio Ponti: A World" at the Design Museum in London, at the Nai in Rotterdam and at the Milan Triennale; in 2004, with Alba Cappellieri, the exhibition and the catalog of "Il design della gioia"; in 2008, a major retrospective on Bruno Munari at Tokyo's Shiodome and the exhibition "Contemporary Italian Jewel" in Vicenza; in 2009, a monograph on Lorenzo Damiani at the Triennale of Milan and, in 2011, at Il Castello Gallery in Milan, a monograph on Paolo Ulian. In 2011 he organized the exhibition "Design an Italian History" in Rome and in Turin. In 2012 he curated, with Sandra Severi, the first anthologist on the work of Gino Sarfatti for the Milan Triennale. In 2016 he attended the Arcidiocesis of Milan at the XX Triennale with the exhibition "Design behind Design" at the Diocesan Museum, followed by the exhibition "Around the Sacred Vessels" in 2017, in the St. Eustorgio Basilica. In 2017 he curated, with for Roberta Lietti, and set up the exhibition "Ico Parisi Rediscovered" at the Villa Reale in Monza, followed by, in 2018, “Gianfarnco Frattini Rediscovered”. In 2019 he curated the first Italian exhibition on Tapio Wirkkala work at Mueso del Vetro, Murano.
From 1994 to 1997 he was Driade's artistic consultant for the "Atlantide" collection. From 1995 to 2013 he has been Oluce art director, from 1996 to 2005 Montina one and in 2007-2008 Marazzi one. Between 2012 and 2015 he has created the Icone collection for Poltrona Frau.
Many are the projects in the fields of architecture and interior architecture in Milan, Cuneo, Sanremo, and Bordighera. He designed with Marta Laudani, in charge of Fiat Engineering, the restoration of the "Museum of Roman Civilization" in Rome-EUR.
All his works have been extensively published in Italy and abroad. In 2004 he was invited at the Venice Architecture Biennale. Between 2006-2018 he was professor of "Jewel Design" at the Milano Politecnico and, and from 2019 to 2021 he was professor of “Art in Urban Environment” at IULM University.
With regard to design, associated with Marta Laudani from 1988 to 2017, he designed for Arflex, Azzurra, Bosa, Cleto Munari, Corraini, Da a, Driade, Fiam, FontanaArte, Glas, Hands on Design, Laboratorio Pesaro, La Palma, Mesa, Montina, Nodus, Oluce, Plust, Redaelli, Salviati, Up&Up, Valsecchi 1918, Varaschin.
In 2010 the Milan Triennale devoted a monographic exhibition to their work regarding the art of the table. In 2014, Vincenzo Cristallo wrote, for Forma Edizioni, the book “Marta Laudani e Marco Romanelli: per un moderno continuo”.