Marcel Breuer American, born Hungary
This chair was conceived during Breuer’s first years at the Bauhaus school in Weimar, and the remarkable design marks the first time he used a cantilevered frame. Its articulated and highly abstract sculptural composition, particularly the intersecting horizontal and vertical planes, attests to the profound influence of the Dutch movement De Stijl, and of the designer Gerrit Rietveld (whose side table is shown here). The chair also represents an important series of collaborations between Breuer and the Bauhaus weaving workshops, led by Gunta Stölzl. The chair’s rigid structure and geometric rationalism is softened somewhat by the lengths of taut woven fabric and the off-set positioning of the wooden supports that allows for a gently sloping seat and reclined back.