The British industrial designer George Sowden moved to Milan in 1971, to work alongside Ettore Sottsass at the electronics firm Olivetti. Nathalie Du Pasquier, an artist originally from Bordeaux in France, came to Milan in 1979 following two years of travel in Africa. The two met, fell in love, and soon were among the founding group of Memphis.
Of all the designers associated with the group, they were the most committed to pattern-making; in the Memphis years, they worked in the Abet Laminati factory developing new prints by hand. Sowden was particularly interested at this time in emergent technology. Long before the advent of widespread internet and digital devices, he conceived his designs as reflecting a fragmentary and information-saturated cultural environment.