Olivares Aluminum Chair

Jonathan Olivares 2012

Jonathan Olivares’ meticulously executed design brings a refined sculptural presence to indoor and outdoor environments alike. The gracefully contoured form is carefully shaped to offer maximum comfort and the die cast aluminum shell is available in a palette of bright, contemporary colors.


  • color White
  • color Light Grey
  • color Dark Charcoal
  • color Sky Blue
  • color Blue
  • color Lime Green
  • color Orange
  • color Plum
  • color Yellow


Additional Info

Construction and Details
  • Suitable for outdoor use
  • Shell is constructed of die-cast aluminum with outdoor powder coat paint
  • Leg tenons are integrated in the shell and a subtle reveal transitions the shell to the extruded aluminum legs
  • Legs are secured to the shell using epoxy and stainless steel fasteners
  • Chairs stack 6 high on the floor
  • Stacking bumper distributes the chair’s weight over a wide area
  • Designer’s signature and the KnollStudio logo are located under the seat
  • Nylon glides included
Sustainable Design and Environmental Certification
  • Olivares Aluminum Chair is certified Clean Air GOLD

Configure Olivares Aluminum Chair


Jonathan Olivares approached the initial product design phase for this outdoor chair with an objective, and not surprisingly taxonomic survey of the category: which ones were too heavy; which were too light; how comfortable were they; how were they produced; and of course, how were they to interact with, to sit with, to live with.

After a series of experiments with hydro-forming, stamping, and other means of manipulating metal, Olivares and team posed a hypothesis: what if we could cast this chair in a single piece of material — not only for ergonomic comfort, but to reduce cost and make the chair as thin as feasible. Ultimately it was the aluminum supplier that suggested this might work.

The final chair is composed of a die-cast aluminum body-contoured shell and extruded aluminum legs; plastic connections tie the pieces together and allow the chairs to stack neatly without scratching. The entire form is powder coated with a durable matte finish.

The chair’s shape evolved in order to maximize structure and hit the sweet spot in terms of weight. Olivares’s team continuously measured against the Bertoia side chair (15 lbs.) until shavings here, adjustments there yielded the perfect weight: the final product is just under 15 lbs. Read More



Jonathan Olivares was born in Boston in 1981 and graduated from Pratt Institute. In 2006 he established Jonathan Olivares Design Research (JODR), an office based in Los Angeles that works in the fields of industrial, spatial and communication design. The office employs a team of two designers and one writer, and collaborates with graphic designers, digital media developers, researchers, architects and filmmakers on a project-by-project basis. Olivares's work engages a legacy of form and technology, and asks to be used rather than observed.

Recent projects include the exhibition Source Material, curated with Jasper Morrison and Marco Velardi (2014); the website A View on Natural Motion, for Nike (2014); the Olivares Aluminum Chair, for Knoll (2012); and the book A Taxonomy of Office Chairs, published by Phaidon Press (2011). Olivares’ work has been published internationally, granted several design awards—including Italy’s Compasso d'Oro—and supported by the Graham Foundation for Advanced Studies in the Fine Arts through two grants.



Photograph: Yoo Jean Han