If you think this voluptuous chair and round ottoman (tethered by a thin back chord) resemble a woman giving birth, you are on to something. The chair that made Gaetano Pesce famous in 1969 (reissued in 1994), Up 5 is largely characteristic of the designer’s unique philosophy, imbuing personality into his designs through unconventional materials.
Up 5 not only has an organic look and feel — the whole piece literally “grows” into form when unwrapped from its tight vacuum seal. It comes as no surprise, then, that Up 5 evokes a mother’s womb and that opening its package becomes an event similar to birth.
Pesce has cleverly applied expandable polyurethane foam, a highly synthetic material (covered in stretch jersey fabric), as a metaphor for one of the most precious moments in humanity.
Installation View with Moloch Floor Lamp (1970-71)
Photographed in the Museum of Modern Art in NYC.