Modern Design /20 March 2005


Ludwig Mies van der Rohe

Barcelona chair
Josef Muller
Germany, c. 1931
chrome-plated steel, leather
30 w × 30 d × 30 h in (76 × 76 × 76 cm)

The two screw lap connection at the corners date this example to the earliest years of production. Perhaps the most recognizable chair design of the twentieth century, the Barcelona chair was designed for the German Pavilion at the 1929 Exposicion Internacional Barcelona. The architectural structure and monumental quality were achieved through the use of cushioned seats and a cross-line silhouette. Mies's melding of traditional and modern features is apparent in this interpretation of the scissor form found in ancient Greek decoration. Literature: Mies van der Rohe, von Vegesack and Kries, ppg. 37-40 illustrates and discusses the chair

estimate: $15,000–20,000
result: $12,000

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