About this artwork
Launched in 2004, chair_ONE was an important project for German designer Konsantin Grcic. It has since come to define his fearless embrace of complex processes. Unlike anything he had designed before, this project marked a critical juncture for him. Approached with the idea of utilizing die-cast aluminum, Grcic seized the opportunity to try something new. What resulted was a design that recalls the wire rod chairs that such designers as Harry Bertoia and Charles and Ray Eames produced in the 1950s and 1960s, but which, instead of wire, exploits the essential principles of die-casting aluminum to create a chair with unique qualities.The requirement that liquid metal be injected into a mould inspired the basketlike structure of the seat, which gives the chair its primary visual language. This form was further developed, three-dimensionally, by the practical needs of the chair to provide support. Playing with a web of narrow tubes, pulling them up to create a backrest and then mimicking this on the sides by folding up the shorter edges of the seat, Grcic was able to sculpt a form that cradles the body and also provides the internal strength for the chair. Subtle, but crucial, adjustments to the design were introduced over a period of two years, during which the chair was continuously tested through digital means to ensure that the network of branching elements achieved its optimal visual and structural form. As in much of his work, Grcic’s indomitable process was driven as much by logic as an eye to aesthetics, and he relied on an intense process of design development using skillfully made physical models, digital renderings, and computer simulations as guides.The resolute silhouette of chair_ONE has proven incredibly tangible, and it quickly yielded a family of designs that have grown directly out of this initial model. These include an outdoor version, complete with a cone-shaped concrete base so that it can’t easily be removed, and a bench made from three chairs linked underneath by a central crossbar. A three-legged stool shares the same geometries as the original chair_ONE, but is further pared down in form, as are an accompanying dining table and bistro table.
Currently Off View
- Architecture and Design
- Konstantin Grcic (Designer)
- Die-cast aluminum and concrete
- 78.7 x 55 x 78.7 cm (31 x 21 5/8 x 31 in.)
- Restricted gift of the Architecture & Design Society