When ‘simplicity’ is complex.
The story of a Vitra original
The development phase for Physix began with the brief to develop an office chair that is rooted in the tradition established by the Eames Aluminium Chair, yet fulfils today’s demands for ergonomically controlled movement of the seat and backrest. The understated aesthetic and formal clarity of the Eames Aluminium Chair are unsurpassable. The idea of stretching a textile sling between two side elements to create a continuous shell was implemented to perfection by Charles and Ray Eames, and the result became an icon of furniture design.
Physix represents the culmination of a chair typology developed over the course of nearly one hundred years in which the seat and backrest exist in a single continuum. In 1927, Mies van der Rohe achieved the first milestone in this evolution with the MR 20/3 cantilever chair, followed by shell chairs in moulded plywood, sheet metal and plastic by Rietveld, Aalto, Coray and many other designers. And, of course, the legendary Aluminium Chair by Charles and Ray Eames. With Physix, Alberto Meda injects fresh energy into the proven idea of a taut textile sling, without losing the simplicity and straightforward spirit of its iconic predecessors.
Publication date: 5.4.2019
Images: Florian Böhm, Marc Eggimann, Marcus Gaab, Alberto Meda
Vitra originals and their stories in the Vitra Magazine
Invest in an original, for it will always retain its worth. An imitation will never be anything but a copy, a stolen idea. Appreciate the differences – not just the quality and more obvious variances but also the sensory and emotional appeal of the authentic product. An original is a lifelong companion and may well outlive you to be gratefully received by the next generation. But that’s a story for the future.