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Chairs Visual Research Collection

Bentwood armchair

by Michael Thonet

Austria, 1859

Michael Thonet experimented with strips of veneer boiled in glue until he succeeded in inventing the furniture made of bent wood. The innovative technique made possible to con struct furniture using fewer pieces and allowing designers to obtain greater visual unity and fluidity. The process was ex ploited for mass production of simple, inexpensive chairs and tables.

Morris chair

by William Morris

England, 1866

The Morris chair is an early type of reclining chair; there fore, we can say that William Morris pioneered in functional furniture. Its a wooden structure with an adjustable low-tech mechanism at the back. It is considered a timeless chair and part of the Art and Crafts movement as an attempt to reform design.

The Red and Blue Chair

by Gerrit Rietveld

Italy, 1918

This beech wood chair is a representation of De Stijl movement, also known as Neoplasticism. Form and color are reduced to the essentials; therefore, the chair is made using primary colors and simple lines. The style not only affected furniture design, but the history of architecture. Rietveld was not interested in conventional ideas of comfort. He wished to keep the sitter physically and mentally toned up.

The Berlin chair

by Gerrit Rietveld

Holland, 1923

The architect Rietveld’s applied the elemental principles of mass, line and primary colour in the production of simple custom-made painted wooden furniture. Rietveld had a great belief that furniture should be be simple, clean and functional, not ostentatious, cheap to make and it should be able to be made by ordinary people. The Berlin chair was part of an ensemble of furnishings designed by Rietveld when he was collaborating with the painter Vilmos Huszar in the design of an exhibition in Berlin in 1923.

Wassily chair

by Marcel Breuer

Germany, 1925

Marcel Breuer pastime of riding bicycles led to an important innovation in furniture in the twentieth century: the use of tubular steel. He realized that by bending the tubular steel of his bicycle, he could made furniture. The chair has a canvas seat, and it seems to be floating. The name of the chair is after the painter Kandinsky Wasilli, Breuer's friend and fellow Bauhaus instructor at the Bauhaus.

Tatlin chair

by Vladimir Tatlin

U.S.S.R., 1927

Constructivism was an artistic movement born in Russia, originated by Vladimir Tatlin's. It lasted a short period but had a great impact on graphic design. Tatlin initiated this movement using materials and pure forms, cardboard, glass, and metal. The beech wood chair he made was outstanding for its remarkable lightness, strength and perfectly balanced proportions. The seat It is a modified tractor saddle with and a leather covering.

Basculant chair

by Le Corbusier

France, 1928

Le Corbusier was a highly influential proponent of the modernist principle of rationalization in furniture. He used modern industrial methods to create standardized designs based on the manufactur ing and design concepts of automobiles or ocean liners. This chair encapsuates these principles. It’s called basculant because of its pivoting back support, the chair was ergonomically designed to the proportions of the human body. It has a simple form, and it’s made of steel and canvas. The chair was used to furnish some of his houses.

Zig-zag chair

by Gerrit Rietveld

Holland, 1934

Gerrit Rietveld wanted to design a chair for mass production. He wanted something solid but comfortable. The chair, instead of having the four normal legs, it had a single sheet of wood in an overturned Z shape. The minimalistic design represents a formal expression of the principles of abstraction supported by the De Stijl artistic movement, which focused on basic forms and primary colours. Rietveld went on to use the chair in many of his later interior designs and also developed an armchair version and a children's highchair based on the same principle.

Lounge chair 670

by Charles Eames

U.S.A., 1956

The Eames lounge chair has become one of the host significant furniture designs of the 20th century. Charles Eames aimed to develop furniture that could be mass-produced and affordable, with the exception of the Eames Lounge Chair. The chair was specifically designed to be the most luxurious, yet beautiful piece of furniture ever created. It’s made with layers of zbent plywood, leather, high-density foam and metal.

Paulistano chair

by Paulo Mendes da Rocha

Brazil, 1957

The chair is made of a continuous 17-foot-long piece of solid polished steel, and it has a single joint. The comfortable structure is wrapped in leather, gaining depth as it ages. It’s inspired on Brazilian indigenous chairs. The Paulistano armchair was part, for many years, of the living rooms of the Athletic Club of São Paulo.

Duplex Stool

by ’ javier Mariscal

Spain, 1981

Designed originally for a bar, it became the first Mariscal design that was produced in series. Instead of for regular legs, five lines of steel are joined together randomly, as if the design was part of a fight in the bar. It’s a low-cost item with bright colors. After forty years of dictatorship, it became a distinctive new design in Spain showing that there is another way of leaving.

Bel Air chair

by Peter Shire

USA., 1982

The chair’s asymmetrical back is based partly on shark fins. The design was influenced by Los Angeles culture of surfing. It’s made of painted wood and loud coloured cotton fabric. The chair is part of the Post-modern movement, a reaction against modernism. The title ‘Bel Air’, was taken from the name of a luxury hotel, in this case a five-star hotel in Bever ly Hills, CA.

Animali Domestichi chair

by Andrea Branzi

Italy, 1985

The contemporary design of the Animali Domestice shows Andrea Branzi interest on human interaction with objects, challenging the conventional notions of habitation. The chair introduces and environment of symbols and materials that invite a new way of inhabiting the house.

Laura Gema Dimas

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