The Bertoia family now includes an elegant new bronze finish and a refined cowhide cover in natural, black and dark brown. The modern structure reinforces its character, juxtaposed with a material of timeless style and an increasingly contemporary finish.
The Bertoia Side Chair with shell in cowhide is extremely comfortable and perfect in any environment, from residential to contract.
Base: Welded steel with rods in polished chrome or with painted black, white or bronze finish.
Basket: Plastic shell completely upholstered in cowhide in three different colours.
Structure in polished chrome or painted black, white or bronze.
Cowhide colours: black, natural and dark brown.
“Designer of the year” 1955, USA; Certificate of Merit, American Institute of Architects, Design Center Stuggart Award, Germany, 1962
Side chair 54 cm W x 58 cm D x 73 cm H.
In 1950 Hans and Florence Knoll offered the sculptor Harry Bertoia a chance to freely apply his artistic concepts to the creation of a chair to include in their collection, still in its early phase. “We decided to let him work in total freedom, to avoid obstructing the creativity that already set him apart in the panorama of designers at the time,” Florence Knoll recalled. Bertoia, in constant pursuit of perfection, worked by hand, trying out many variations, with the aim of shaping space while utilizing a light, airy structure. Thanks to an almost artistic procedure, different seats were created, each with its own specific function: from the Side Chair and Stool for the dining area to the Diamond and Large Diamond armchairs, all the way to the lounge model, the Bird Chair, by way of the Asymmetric model. Each had its own natural and sculptural form. The Bertoia Collection (1952) is still available in a wide range of coverings, aptly suited to the innovative furnishings Harry Bertoia invented with such ability and artistic intelligence.
Italian sculptor, university lecturer and furniture designer Harry Bertoia displayed a unique stroke of genius with his patented Diamond Chair for Knoll International in 1952. Bertoia was an inventor of form and an enricher of furniture design with his introduction of a new material: he turned industrial wire rods into a design icon. Educated at Detroit Technical High School, the Detroit School of Arts and Crafts and Cranbrook Academy of Art in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan, Bertoia taught metal crafts at Cranbrook. He worked with Charles Eames to develop his signature moulded plywood chairs. Eero Saarinen commissioned him to design a metal sculptured screen for the General Motors Technical Center in Detroit. His awards include the craftsmanship medal from the American Institute of Architects, as well as AIA's Gold Medal.
"In sculpture, I am primarily concerned with space, form and the characteristics of metal. In the chairs, many functional problems have to be satisfied first... but when you get right down to it, the chairs are studies in space, form and metal too."