Back in 1956 Charles and Ray Eames designed a chair which may be the most desired piece of furniture ever. The Eames chair is a classic, the centre piece of numerous carefully styled photo spreads and stylish rooms.
A very masculine piece of furniture, Eames chairs in private homes invariably have a singular owner. They are rarely ‘the chair’, more often ‘Bob’s’ chair, or whoever’s. We suspect that, if anyone should ever do the research, Eames chairs would top the poll as the favourite of architects everywhere. Fifty six years after it was designed Vitra continue to manufacture and sell the genuine article.
So how daunting must it be to be given the job of designing a new chair for Vitra, in the tradition of the great classic?
And here it is, Antonio Citterio’s Grand Repos. Clearly respectful of the tradition he follows, Citterio’s chair is perhaps a touch more indulgent with infinite adjustments and generous padding. It may even be somewhat less masculine. Citterio has worked with Vitra for over 25 years and it says a lot that a firm with such a sense of history charged him with creating a new chair inspired by such a classic.
Images from Vitra.