Born in Como in 1947, Carlo Forcolini took his diploma at the Brera Academy of Fine Arts in Milan in 1969. Since that year, he has worked as a designer and entrepreneur, taking part in the foundation of Alias and Nemo, in which he also held the offices of Managing Director and Art Director.
From 1978 to 1984, Forcolini lived in London, where he set up Alias U.K. and became Director of Artemide GB.
As of 1983, he has taken part in numerous international exhibitions and events in Madrid, Los Angeles, London, Hamburg, Cologne, Tokyo, Sidney, Santiago del Chile, Oslo etc..
His more important exhibitions include I modi del progetto (Design methods) at the Pignatelli Cortes Museum in Naples in 1987; Design Alias from Italy, in the Soviet Cultural Foundation in Moscow in 1989, and Creativitalia in Tokyo in 1990. He has had personals at the Permanente in Milan in 1991 (Imagining Things), in Innsbruck in 1996 and in Toronto and Brussels in 1997.
Forcolini has conducted seminars in various schools and universities, including the prestigious Graham Foundation in Chicago. His designs number among the collections in the Cooper Hewitt Museum in New York, the Museum of Decorative Arts in Paris and the Historical Collection of Italian design at the Milan Triennale.
He has designed furnishings, lamps and objects for Amar, Artemide, Alias, Cassina, De Padova, Gervasoni, Joint, Nemo and Pomellato. For Pomellato, he also designed shops in Barcelona, Madrid, Antwerp, Taipei, Lisbon, Montecarlo, Singapore, Marbella, Cannes and Moscow.
Since 1999, he has been co-ordinating the Forcolini.Lab, a creative workshop operating in the various different fields of visual communications. His more recent labours include graphic and exhibition designs for the Triennale.
In December 2001, Forcolini was elected President of ADI, the Italian Association for Industrial Design.
He lives and works in Milan.