Montegrappa's “Icons” series pays tribute to cultural giants, regardless of the fields in which their character and achievements lifted them to global awareness. Launching the series is an individual who figures prominently in any list of the 20th Century’s strongest, most influential personalities, the man who revolutionized boxing on every level: Muhammad Ali. His talent, his skill and the path of his career introduced monumental changes in the sport, and the way it is perceived. It remains so to this day.
As a professional boxer, Muhammad Ali shattered stereotypes, his stance and speed serving him in a way not typical of heavyweights. With his good looks and unparalleled gracefulness, allied to quick wit and verbal dexterity that would inspire rappers a generation later, Muhammad Ali created not just an enviable record in the ring – he created a larger-than-life persona outside of it.
As a celebrity boxer with fame that surpassed all who had fought before, Muhammad Ali extended his influence beyond the arena. His stance against the Vietnam War, his conversion to Islam, his litany of eminently-repeatable quotes, his comebacks: Muhammad Ali became a cultural force beyond the confines of sport. In terms of his impact as a notable personality of the 20th Century, he ranks as an icon of the highest standing and influence.
To reflect elements of Muhammad Ali's varied, eventful career, Montegrappa has integrated a number of characteristic details into the Icons “Tribute to Muhammad Ali” Pen. The nib sports the “raised arms” silhouette of the victorious boxer, above the name “Ali”, with the collar between nib and barrel formed from black resin. Finished in white pearlised resin with a black stripe running its length, the barrel bears the colours of his boxing shorts.
In order to achieve the desired black-and-white effect, Montegrappa employs a state-of-the-art material with unique properties. These include half the weight of glass of the same thickness, excellent optical clarity and light transmission properties, the ability to withstand temperature extremes at different altitudes and superb flexural strength for superior resistance to breakage. Equally important, as the writer enjoys physical contact with the pen, the material also proves warm to the touch.
The end of the barrel completes the look with two circumferential black stripes, as found at the tops of Ali’s socks. The pocket clip, terminated with the Montegrappa rolling end-piece, takes the shape of the stitching on Ali's boxing gloves. The cap's profile follows the arc of a speed bag, while the end of the cap is shaped in the cushion form of the “World Championship” diamond-encrusted ring worn by Ali and his corner team. Lastly, the cap features the great man's signature, in black, with the legend “The Greatest of All Time” incorporated into the cap's top.