Eames Plastic Chair
Why it is a must-have
'Getting the most of the best to the greatest number of people for the least': with these words, Charles and Ray Eames described one of their main goals as furniture designers. None of their other designs come as close to achieving this ideal as the Plastic Chairs. For years, the designer couple explored the fundamental idea of a one-piece seat shell moulded to fit the contours of the human body. After experiments with plywood and sheet aluminium in the 1940s produce unsatisfactory results, their search for alternative materials led them to glass-fibre reinforced polyester resin.
The Eames Plastic Chairs also introduced a new furniture typology that has since become widespread: the multifunctional chair whose shell can be joined with a variety of different bases to serve diverse purposes. As early as 1950, Charles and Ray Eames presented a series of bases that enabled various sitting positions. An especially striking model is the so-called Eiffel Tower base – an intricate and graceful design made of steel wire that inimitably combines light, elegant forms with structural strength.
The Eameses recognised and fully exploited the advantages of the material: mouldability, rigidity, pleasant tactile qualities, suitability for industrial manufacturing methods. With this material, which was previously unknown in the furniture industry, they successfully developed the shell designs for serial production. After their debut at the 'Low-Cost Furniture Design' competition organised by the Museum of Modern Art in 1948, the Plastic Armchair (A-shell) and Plastic Side Chair (S-shell) were launched on the market in 1950 as the very first mass-produced plastic chairs in the history of furniture.
Non-stacking base in solid wood, stained and lacquered finish, maple in different colours, ash in honey tone. Steel rod cross struts in basic dark. (DSW = Dining Height)
Vitra is a Swiss company dedicated to improving the quality of homes, offices and public spaces through the power of design.
Their products and concepts are developed in an intensive design process, which brings together our engineering excellence with the creative genius of leading international designers. It is their goal to create interiors, furniture and accessories that are functional and inspiring. Longevity of materials, construction and aesthetics is their leading principle, as demonstrated by their Classics – many in continuous production since the 1950s.