October 1973, the big oil crisis, the beginning of our history. The governments of oil producing countries decided to independently control production and become autonomous in their export price policy. As a consequence, the price of oil skyrocketed. All European countries took immediate action by introducing austerity plans to save energy. Due to this serious energy crisis, outcome of political action, oil was no longer considered the only energy resource but just one of many. Deeper studies into alternative energy resources began, focusing on wind, nuclear, solar and hydroelectric power. At the same time in Italy, transom windows became a distinguishing feature of popular architecture and pba registered its first patent: transom window arms.
Every product is the “product” of its time, and reflects the History and the needs of its generation. Observation becomes intuition, technique becomes the design and the object answering these needs. No one is left out from leaving their mark, no one is left out from playing along with a continuous metamorphosis where only one’s own values are steady factors. In fact, at pba quality is our only steady factor.
While everyday items turn into décor objects, pba registers its first colored polyammide-6 pull, the 308. Doors are now opened by pulling an object that is no longer concelead by its own function, it is rather identifiable per se by eyes and hands. The prêt-à-porter becomes part of the Architecture.
In the 1980s, the Italian Industrial design creates products that would become world-famous design objects. An object that until then was made invisible by the habit of only being used, becomes beautiful in itself and therefore it is seen and decontextualized. An everyday object like a pull is deprived of its function and detached from its mere use; it is given a life of its own. At the same time a material like thermoplastic resin (polyamide-6), common for others uses, becomes constituent material of a design product.
When the object itself is defined by form and not by function, when Beauty is the goal, the best craftsmen and most precious materials become part of the object. What is created is not a product but a clump of material and perception, which aims at being desirabile for promising much more than one can see, touch and use. The Venezia Collection, crafted in collaboration with Carlo Nason Glass Factory in Murano, wins several prizes and is displayed in Art Galleries and Museums worldwide.
pba is renowned especially as the premier brand of AISI 316L stainless steel, the hardest, most resistant and elastic of steels and of polyamide 6, the most noble of thermoplastic resins. Our main collections- door and window levers, pulls and locking pulls and all the accessories for a “life without barriers”- are developed with the firm belief that objects reflect a space, disclose its nature, its illusions and possibilities. We are aware that bringing a new form into the world can affect the life of everyone.
The form of an object not only establishes its function; it also gives a clear indication of the designer’s view of the world. The lines we draw, the materials we choose to create an object to hold a thousand times and more, are symbols reflecting the thoughts of whom first imagined them. Introduce into the world a form that wasn’t there before is, therefore, an act of responsibility deeply thought through.
The forms we imagine, develop and produce for a “life without barriers” can be considered successful as long as they are perceived as being for everyone to live spaces comfortably and not as targeting a particular category of user. We wish to make excellence accessible to all - even to those who can reach up easily.
Shape follows function. The IT line can only be grasped as an idea, and like an idea trapped in matter, it lets itself be revealed. Silently, noiselessly, accepting no decorations because beauty comes when less is more. Products will always inhabit the world as long as they remain useful and attractive, while evolving in an imperishable, hard, elastic, strong, deep, steady and reliable way: just like stainless steel.
pba'pulls with locks are patented and certified; we pride ourselves of being an Italian producer that throughout its history relies on imagination to extract forms, on technique to implement projects, on research and trials to guarantee quality. Because we are happy when “you hold a pba’s idea”. Our company partners with state-of-the art scientific and techological hubs, universties and research centers, as we belive that innovation can be found in high-attendance spaces.
The unique design of Elica, the stainless-steel handle designed for pba by Jérôme Brunet of Paris studio Brunet Saunier Architecture, grants an excellent grip even for people with reduced hand mobility. The flat upper part with a generous surface area and curved ends avoids accidental hooking and makes vertical movements easier for people in wheelchairs.
The bathroom accessories Platform combines lean design with functional playfulness, enabling products to adapt to any bathroom environment. Visually, they are sculptural objects connected to their essential forms and functions; embedded in the spaces, they become thoughtfully designed stylish elements.
Knowledge is the best strategy against barriers. The word “Handicap” comes from the noble world of horse racing: to make a steeple race more difficult, the jockey was asked to hold his cap in one hand. To hand the cap: the glance we look at, the intention we name reality with, is what makes reality real. Knowledge undoubtedly makes reality more beautiful. CAP originates from an intuition, from the desire to see the world for what it could be. When not in use, CAP accessories disappear from view. It is this “disappearance” that reveals its true meaning. Here design is genuinely for everyone, not for a specific user, but solely for the free and equal use of everyone.
Sculpted for one hand opening and closing with no pinching, wrist twisting, or simultaneous hand and finger manipulation required, each Everyone Millwork Pull has a minimum opening width of 4" and a minimum opening depth of 1" (based on typical door/drawer dimensions). They ensure a beautifully minimal solution for virtually every custom millwork application, and the ergonomic design of the products offers a high level of comfort and ease for all users.
The Single-Motion unlocking door pull is life-safety hardware that makes egress easier and more elegant. Opening the door from the inside simultaneously releases the bolt and thumbturn for simpler, quicker exiting. Based on a patent pending activation bar and latching system, the pull is available for sliding and swing doors (both push and pull), ADA compliant.
We imagine, develop and manufacture barrier free bathware accessories and objects to make environments inclusive. This is an aesthetic, technical and human challenge that identifies beauty as the way to give equal dignity to differences.
The Hands-free door pull collection is the perfect synthesis of functionality and sculptural elegance, proving, once again, that high-utility products don’t have to undermine the visual integrity of a space. Hand-crafted of corrosion-resistant AISI 316L stainless steel, the line includes 13 unique designs that let users enter and exit with their wrists, forearms, and elbows instead of their fingers and palms.
The Hand Sanitizer Cover collection demonstrates how thoughtful design can make hand hygiene more attractive, elevating the appearance of all public-facing spaces. Crafted by hand of AISI 316L stainless steel and including two freestanding, two wall-mounted and a new countertop model, the Hand Sanitizer Cover collection ensures a beautifully minimal design solution that is also exceptionally easy to use and maintain.
Besides designing inclusive and ADA compliant products, pba has included in its range the use of copper with top quality 316L stainless steel. This combination can reduce the spread of healthcare-acquired infection and improve everybody’s health outcomes not only in healthcare facilities for patients, visitors and healthcare workers, but also in offices, in hotels, in all public and private spaces where hygiene is today a must have condition.
Imagine, develop, manufacture, and introduce into the world something that wasn’t there before is a carefully pondered responsibility. We need to take a step back, and give up the idea of filling the whole space to make room for something else: other needs, other cultures, other desires. Because the Earth and its resources are not something we inherited from our fathers, but something we are borrowing from our sons. If the purpose of an action changes, the action itself shifts from what it was. This new way of acting - the only approach to secure our future- can be certified. LEED system is the most widely used green building rating standard. pba products contribute to satisfying prerequisites and credits under continue LEED®.
The Declare label lists the materials in a product to disclose what they are made of, where they are produced and how they will be disposed of. This label is a call for responsibility to producers and users alike. The Declare Label is a guide to select products, provides information in a simple and transparent way and rises above greenwashing. Declare takes complex chemical analysis and raw material source location information to establish that products are free from hazardous chemicals. All Declare Label of pba products are Red List Free.
Since 1973 we imagine, develop and manufacture bathware and hardware accessories to make environments inclusive. This is an aesthetic, technical and human challenge where beauty channels equal dignity to differences.
The Design for All bathroom accessories program demonstrates how elegant, well-coordinated design can elevate the appearance and performance of accessible spaces. Smartly detailed and exceptionally well crafted, each product promotes a life without barriers and supports inclusion beautifully.
DFA Design for All™ is an International Registered Trademark owned by pba, covering all our products. Our challenge is to create solutions that are simultaneously unique yet accessible to all; products come to life as industrial projects (identical for all), but can meet diverse needs: hence Design for All.