Guglielmo Ulrich graduated from the Istituto Superiore Politechnico in 1927. Three years later, he co-founded the furniture company ARCA, short for Arredamento Casa (Home Furnishings) of which he was the designer. Ulrich’s early designs are in an elegant and highly finished Art Deco style, which was very popular among the high society of Milan. Ulrich was praised for his ability to combine the functional with original and beautiful form, while also experimenting with rare and exotic materials. A group of these early designs - some presentation drawings for his patrons, others more likely meant for reproduction in sales catalogues or brochures - was donated to the Metropolitan Museum of Art in the 1980s. The drawings show different qualities of Ulrich as a designer. While the design for a side board shows how he plays with the silhouette and footprint of such a conventional piece of furniture, the drawing with the sofa and storage unit shows him catering to different markets. The inscription in the upper right corner tells us that the sofa was available in two different versions: an economic version in faux artificial leather and metal; and an exclusive rendition in cow leather with exotic Caucasian walnut wood and metal.