Kazuhide Takahama first crossed paths with Italian design promoter and entrepreneur Dino Gavina at the 1954 Milan Triennale. The two formed a bond that would last half a century and result in the worldwide popularity of Takahama’s foam block designs. Gavina, who felt that simplified production should be the primary concern of all modern design, was attracted to the rational clarity and manufacturability of Takahama’s designs
When Takahama moved to Bologna to immerse himself in the Italian design scene he had fallen in love with, he was invited to design for Gavina SpA, which introduced the Taka Bench, GEA Storage System and 3 foam block lounge collections— Suzanne, Raymond and Marcel.
When Knoll acquired Gavina SpA in 1968, most of the designs were briefly marketed by Knoll, but only the Suzanne proved popular enough to remain in the catalog. It sold well through the 1980s, was discontinued for a time, and eventually reintroduced in 2006.