Art/ Collection/ Collection/ Art Object
{{img.publicCaption}}

"Contour" Chair

Designer:
Frank Gehry (American, born 1929)
Manufacturer:
Easy Edges Inc.
Date:
designed 1970, manufactured ca. 1982
Medium:
Corrugated cardboard, Masonite
Dimensions:
29 3/8 x 23 3/8 x 37 1/2in. (74.6 x 59.4 x 95.3cm)
Classification:
Furniture
Credit Line:
Gift of James D. Barron, 1987
Accession Number:
1987.357
Not on view
The "Contour" chair, designed by architect Frank Gehry, transforms cardboard-one of the most prosaic and utilitarian of industrial materials-into a durable, visually dynamic, and structurally sound piece of modern design. Beginning in the late 1960s, Gehry experimented with furniture made of composite layers of cardboard, yielding objects of substantial resilience and strength, while at the same time permitting considerable flexibility of form. The "Contour" chair, for example, features a fluid, ribbonlike shape that belies its sturdy structure. Gehry was particularly interested in creating well-designed, low-cost goods, and its standardized production and inexpensive materials made "Contour" an affordable piece of furntiture. The use of common industrial supplies such as cardboard characterized much of Gehry's early architecture and design, as he sought to create a new formal vocabulary through everyday materials.
James D. Barron, New York (until 1987; his gift to MMA)

New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "A Century of Design, Part III: 1950–1975," November 28, 2000–April 1, 2001, no catalogue.

Suzanne Slesin. "Born-Again Cardboard Furniture." New York Times (July 22, 1982), p. C8, ill.



Related Objects

"EASY CHAIR"

Artist: Frank Gehry (American, born 1929) Date: designed 1969, manufactured 1971 Medium: Cardboard with Masonite edging Accession: 1983.409 On view in:Not on view

"Cross Check" armchair

Artist: Frank Gehry (American, born 1929) Date: 1989–92 Medium: Maple Accession: 1997.179 On view in:Not on view

Screen (Prototype)

Artist: Frank Gehry (American, born 1929) Date: ca. 1990 Medium: Bentwood, wood, metal Accession: 2002.353.2 On view in:Not on view