Sitting Sculpture

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When choosing a chair, why not consider a piece of sculpture?

Bertoia Sculptures

Impractical?  Not when you consider the inspiration.  None of the above sculptures were intended to function as chairs.  Rather, Harry Bertoia drew on this sculptural talent when he designed a series of iconic chairs for Knoll in the 1950’s.

Bertoia Chairs for Knoll

Aha!  A sculptor’s art yields seating function!

“I appreciate a slight yield, lightness of weight, some motion if possible, because in moving about, the human body determines… the comfort and the measurements of its environment… there are certain motions we go through – we like to lean back, like to toss things – and if the chair’s adaptable it responds and it’s almost like wearing a comfortable coat; you really don’t know you have it on.” – Harry Bertoia

This innovative classic allows you to add functional art to your indoor or outdoor space.  You choose:  keep it plain to accentuate the form, add padding to the seat or back to enhance your comfort, even add a Rislan coating to the wire for color or so that you may use it outdoors!

It bears mentioning that only Knoll manufactures Bertoia by license.  Be aware, there are cheap imitations everywhere!  Why should you know the difference? So that you can make an informed selection.

Only the chairs produced by Knoll are faithful to the original design.  In fact, you can find early Knoll Bertoias that are over 50 years old, have stood up to daily use, and still are in great condition!  These vintage originals are prized and often command a price higher than the buyer originally paid.

Unlike cheap knockoffs, the Knoll welds are expertly clean.  The stock is not too thick, nor does Knoll need to run two pieces of wire around the outer frame to make the chair strong enough (a common and disgusting offense to the fluidity of the chair’s single sinuous wire design).  I mean, come on … Bertoia was a sculptor after all (Tulsa has its own Bertoia sculpture, do you know where?).  Just look at a few of his sonambulent sculptures.

Proper wire gauge is as important to making these beauties sing as it is to forming a chair-as-sculpture — let’s just agree to trust Harry on this.

At the end, Knoll Bertoias are of the highest quality and are true to the beauty of the sculptor’s original intent so that they please your eye, add a spark to your home, and stand the test of time … the best measure of value!

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