Bauhaus MR10 Chair By Ludwig Mies Van Der Rohe
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- Chromed tubular steel frame
- Original rattan or cane seat
- Designed by Ludwig Mies Van Der Rohe and produced by Thonet
- German ~ 1950s
- 49cm wide x 70cm deep x 82cm tall
- 48cm seat height
First designed in 1927, This chair’s deceptively simple design embodies the “less is more” philosophy of Mies van der Rohe. The ultra-modern chrome finish sharply contrasts with the natural woven-cane seat and back, creating a streamlined appearance that exemplifies industrial technology and the spirit of modernity in the early 20th century.
Favoured for its strength, lightness, and economic practicality, tubular-steel furniture became widely popular in the 1920s. The material’s attributes made it well suited for this cantilevered design, which functions without the support of back legs. Innovations in chrome plating also proved revolutionary, producing a corrosion-resistant, silver-like surface for a fraction of the cost.
Ludwig Mies van der Rohe
Ludwig Mies (he added his mother’s surname, van der Rohe, when he had established himself as an architect) was the son of a master mason who owned a small stonecutter’s shop. Mies helped his father on various construction sites but never received any formal architectural training. At age 15 he was apprenticed to several Aachen architects for whom he sketched outlines of architectural ornaments, which the plasterers would then form into stucco building decorations. This task developed his skill for linear drawings, which he would use to produce some of the finest architectural renderings of his time.
In 1905, at the age of 19, Mies went to work for an architect in Berlin, but he soon left his job to become an apprentice with Bruno Paul, a leading furniture designer who worked in the Art Nouveau style of the period. Two years later he received his first commission, a traditional suburban house. Its perfect execution so impressed Peter Behrens, then Germany’s most progressive architect, that he offered the 21-year-old Mies a job in his office, where, at about the same time, Walter Gropius and Le Corbusier were also just starting out.
Perhaps Mies’s most famous executed project of the interwar period in Europe was the German Pavilion (also known as the Barcelona Pavilion), which was commissioned by the German government for the 1929 International Exposition at Barcelona (demolished 1930; reconstructed 1986). It exhibited a sequence of marvelous spaces on a 175- by 56-foot (53.6- by 17-metre) travertine platform, partly under a thin roof, and partly outdoors, supported by chromed steel columns. The spaces were defined by walls of honey-coloured onyx, green Tinian marble, and frosted glass and contained nothing but a pool, in which stood a sculptural nude, and a few of the chairs Mies had designed for the pavilion. These cantilevered steel chairs, which are known as Barcelona chairs, became an instant classic of 20th-century furniture design.
In 1930 Mies was appointed director of the Bauhaus, which had moved from Weimar to Dessau in 1925. Between Nazi attacks from outside and left-wing student revolts from within, the school was in a state of perpetual turmoil. Though not cut out to be an administrator, Mies soon won respect as a stern but superb teacher. When the Nazis closed the school in 1933, Mies tried for a few months to continue it in Berlin. But modern design was as hopeless a cause in Hitler’s totalitarian state as was political freedom. Mies announced the end of the Bauhaus in Berlin late in 1933 before the Nazis could close it.
His furniture designs and architecture remain some of the most ground breaking and important of the 20th century.
A couple of small pieces of rattan missing on one arm, chrome and stability of the chair are near mint
As with all of our products this product is an original piece and has lived a life before it arrived at Otto's HQ. It has been sympathetically restored by the Otto's team to ensure it has a life for many more years to come. All of our products will show signs of patina and cosmetic wear, this we believe is what gives our products their unique charm. If you have any further questions regarding the condition of this product or any others please don't hesitate to contact us and we'll be happy to answer any questions you may have.