Courtesy of Formative Modern
A nickel-plated tubular steel armchair with calfskin upholstery by French modernist René Herbst. This well-documented design embodies a move towards the aesthetic avant-garde that was set into motion by the Union des Artistes Modernes, a coalition of progressive designers that Herbst helped to found in 1929 that included visionaries like: Eileen Gray, Le Corbusier, Jean Prouvé, Pierre Jeanneret, Pierre Chareau, Robert Mallet-Stevens, Charlotte Perriand and Louis Sognot among others. All of these designers were united by the sentiment to, in Herbst’s words, “create without looking back.” The designs that this group of designers introduced emphasized function over ornamentation, favoring an industrial aesthetic that made use of readily available materials like glass and steel. This chair appears in several of Herbst’s interior projects, including: Herbst’s installation at Salon des Artistes Décorateurs (1928), Luminex store interior (1928), and the Henriette Léon boutique (1928). This design was not fit for mass production, due to the expert handwork required to finish the numerous joints in nickel-plate. Thus, this chair was created in limited runs by Etablissements Herbst and is rare today. It can be found in the permanent collections at the Musée des Arts Décoratifs and the Pompidou.
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- Tubular steel, calfskin
- 26.5”h x 21”w x 26”d