Tag Archive | chair

Eye On Design: Flag Halyard Armchair By Hans Wegner

hans wegner halyard armchair photo by gail worley
All Photos By Gail

An iconic and dramatic lounge chair created by Hans Wegner in 1950, the Flag Halyard Armchair has a sculptural and engineered stainless steel frame with a seat and back made of plaited flag halyard. Comfort is added with a longhaired sheepskin throw and an adjustable leather headrest.

flag halyard armchair by hans wegner photo by gail worley

The story goes that Wegner conceived this design while on the beach towards the end of the 1940s. He supposedly modeled the grid-like seat in a sand dune, presumably with some old rope that lay close by (a halyard is a line that hoists or covers a sail).  The chair went into production in the 1950s and its unlikely combination of rope, painted and chrome-plated steel, sheepskin and linen are still unprecedented in furniture manufacture. Wegner’s motivation in using such contrasting materials was apparently not to exploit their textural interplay but more simply to demonstrate his ability to design innovative, practical and comfortable furniture – in any material.

flag halyard armchair by hans wegner photo by gail worley

As Hans Wegner conceived the idea for this chair while at the beach, the wide-set and low frame is naturally perfect for an afternoon rest, especially when matched with the cozy comfort of a sheepskin throw and down feather filled headrest. Reproductions of this chair, perfectly balanced and built with a solid stainless steel frame and 240 meters of textured flag line, create a modern industrial beauty that upholds the iconic style of the original Danish design, and can be found for as little as $1,650. An original will set you back about $14,000.

Photographed in the Museum of Modern Art on NYC.

Eye On Design: Maquette 259 Seating By Faye Toogood

maquette 259 faye toogood photo by gail worley
All Photos By Gail

British designer Faye Toogood believes that, whatever your domain of design expertise, the materials you can get your hands on are essential, “because you are always looking for a new way to interpret your designs and to explain your story.” This approach also pertains to her recent venture from designing signature interior spaces and environments (for high-profile clients), to furniture design.

maquette 259 faye toogood photo by gail worley

Part of the exhibit What Would Have Been on view at Freidman Benda, her Maquette 259 seating (2020)  realized in a rusty-peach-painted canvas over upholstery foam aligns with this aesthetic. Toogood’s products are designed with “honesty to the rawness and irregularity of the chosen material,” and are sculptural in form. Like her interior spaces, her furniture is considerate of both the two-dimensional design as well as three-dimensional space.

maquette 259 faye toogood photo by gail worley

I love how it looks like a group of boulders just rolled together! Maquette 259 was manufactured in an limited edition of 8 pieces. Contact Friedman Benda Gallery in NYC for purchase information.

Eye On Design: Washington Skeleton Side Chair By David Adjaye

washington skeleton side chair photo by gail worley
All Photos By Gail

The Metropolitan Museum of Art does not often invite visitors to sit directly on the art, but they have made an exception for these Washington Skeleton Side Chairs (2013), designed by Ghanaian-British architect David Adjaye, which can be found in the gallery where the 2020 Holiday Tree is on display.

washington skeleton side chair photo by gail worley

These delicately balanced, precisely engineered chairs emerged from the design process for the façade of the National Museum of African-American History and Culture, which opened in Washington DC in 2016.  David Adjaye developed an intricate lattice form that was an investigation of the geometry, materiality, light and shadow.

washington skeleton side chair detail photo by gail worley

Both functional in its shading role, and poetic in its abstract visual qualities, this screen borrowed from African design patterns but also paid homage to the history of enslaved blacksmiths and their ironwork for ornamental gates in southern cities such as New Orleans and Charleston.

washington skeleton side chair photo by gail worley

Utilizing the smaller scale of furniture as an agile testing ground for these architectural ideas, Adjaye produced what he describes as a “narrative about skin, form and structure.“ Here, he shapes the skeletal, ribbed surfaces to mimic the form of a seated person, resulting in a cantilevered, ergonomic silhouette that almost disappears when in use. Made of die-cast aluminum, then powder coated and copper plated, the chairs are manufactured by Knoll International.

washington skeleton side chair photo by gail worley

Photographed in the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City.

washington skeleton side chair photo by gail worley

Eye On Design: Melting Thonet Chair By OrtaMiklos

melting thonet chair photo by gail worley
All Photos By Gail Worley

The classic Thonet Chair design gets a super artsy, post-modern treatment with Melting Thonet, from European design firm OrtaMiklos (which includes partners Leo Orta and Victor Miklos Andersen).

melting thonet chair photo by gail worley

Generally informed by natural habitats and processes, the creative duo’s experimental approach activates their design works from the existing norms. Here, Michael Thonet’s innovative chair frame — created by bending wood with hot steam and forming it into curved, graceful shapes — is fabricated from a powder-coated steel, to create a frame that exaggerates the original’s bends and twists into an entirely different domain.

melting thonet chair photo by gail worley

Photographed at Friedman Benda Gallery in Chelsea (Contact for Pricing) as part of the Recent Exhibit, What Would Have Been.

melting thonet chair photo by gail worley

Eye On Design: Coco Rose Lounge Chair By Blumarine for Calligaris

Blumarine Coco Chair for Caligaris
This Image. All Others Photos By Gail

With the cancellation of all of this year’s many annual art and design shows, it’s been challenging to continually source beautiful things to feature in this weekly column. Fortunately, the design stores appear to have reopened, as I discovered quite by accident when I walked past Caligaris and was sucked in off the street after catching a glimpse of this beauty in the window.

caligaris rose coco chair photo by gail

Meet the Coco Lounge Chair, upholstered in a stunning Jubilee Pink velvet rose print; the product of a collaboration between Calligaris and Italian fashion brand Blumarine, by designer Anna Molinari. The Rose is one of Molinari’s most popular motifs. This version of the Coco chair was launched during 2019 Design Week.

coco lounge chair rose fabric detail photo by gail worley

In addition to the red-on-pink, and pink-on-pink rose print, the chair is also available upholstered with black roses on a grey background, with the tubular frame available in a variety of metallic finishes, to suit your taste and decor. This chair has a retail price point of $1,563. You can see more photos of all textile designs and finishes Here.

Calligaris is Located at 220 East 57th Street in New York City.

caligaris rose coco chair photo by gail worley

Eye On Design: Minosse Glass Block Chair by studiopluz for WonderGlass

minosse glass block chair photo by gail worley
All photos By Gail

An undeniable showstopper of the 2019 Salon Art + Design show in NYC, the translucent, rainbow-hued Minosse Glass Block Chair remains one of the most breathtaking pieces on the floor. Comprising a range of glass blocks set individually by hand, Minosse recalls ‘the labyrinthine geometries of mythic palaces belonging to ancient civilizations.’

minosse glass block chair photo by gail worley

An original design by Milan-based studiopluz, the chair was exhibited by London’s WonderGlass gallery as an integral part of its site-specific Dark Matter installation. Exploring the transformation of matter, sound, cosmic geometry, and light, Dark Matter was created in a collaboration that also included Tokyo-based studio, Curiosity by Gwenael Nicolas.

minosse glass block chair photo by gail worley

The throne-like chair pushes the boundaries of glass manipulation, allowing for the piece to represent advancements in color combination with the glass surface used as a white canvas upon which paint is applied by hand. The process is impossible to replicate, thus allowing each piece to celebrate individual authenticity as an integral part of its design resolution.

minosse glass block chair photo by gail worley

Photographed in November of 2019 at the Salon Art + Design at the NYC Armory.

Eye on Design: Puff and Stuff Chair By Chris Schanck

puff and stuff chair by chris chance photo by gail worley
All Photos By Gail

What caught my eye immediately on flyers for the 2019 edition of The Salon Art + Design show was the included image of a vibrant Pink version of Chris Schanck’s Puff and Stuff Chair (2019). With it its quilted, glossy velvet upholstery and biomorphic sculptural base comprised of steel, aluminum, polystyrene, polyuria, aluminum foil and resin, the chair manages to look both organic and highly stylized simultaneously. The Pink Puff and Stuff Chair became my number-one-must-see item at the fair, but sadly my dream was not fully realized.

firedman benda booth photo by fail worley
Puff and Stuff Chair Installation View

Friedman Benda, who represent the designer, chose to display Puff and Stuff only in a Sage Green. I was disappointed, sure; but that didn’t mean I wasn’t going to write about the chair. Because, look at how awesome it is.

puff and stuff chair side detail photo by gail worley

It looks like the walls of a futuristic space cave — and please note that no two are alike. These chairs and the accompanying peach-hued pedestal table are inspired by Schanck’s 2018 solo exhibit at Friedman Benda entitled Unhomely, which focused on the designer’s acclaimed sculptural approach.

orange pedestal table detail photo by gail worley

Unhomely featured 15 works with independent, stand-alone narratives woven into an otherworldly landscape. Synthesizing premeditation and spontaneity, Schanck’s highly individualized, low-tech, idiosyncratic technique, Alufoil (in which industrial and discarded materials are sculpted, covered in aluminum foil and then sealed with resin) was conceived in 2011 during his MFA studies. The process begins with Schanck’s imaginative drawings and models, which are then executed by a team of artists and collaborators apprenticed in his Alufoil method.

Installation view photo by gail worley

Hybrids of sculpture and furniture, Schanck’s bold constructions blend biomorphic forms with elaborately crafted symbolism. These assemblages draw from a wide range of influences ranging from Brutalist and Art Deco architecture to ancient Egyptian, Anatolian and Aztec iconography. Skirting the line between refinement and camp, Schanck’s figurative, at times anatomical, creations reference science fiction films and conjure up visions of ancient aliens, hidden cavernous chambers, and monolithic space operas.

2 puff and stuff chairs photo by gail worley

Despite overt references to fantasy and meta-fiction, Schanck’s assemblages are grounded in the reality of humanity’s relentless  inventiveness. “In my work,” the Detroit native admits, “I take inspiration from the people and forms around me and dip them into a futuristic skin.”

Photographed in the booth for Friedman Benda at the Salon Art + Design 2019 in NYC.