The humble chair is a key piece of furniture in our modern lives. From non-descript stools to lavish lounges, chairs offer us the chance to rest, wait, socialize, contemplate, and much more. But despite their indispensability, chairs are often only considered regarding their practicality.
However, creative and innovative designers are looking to change that. This year’s Maison et Objet event showcased the cleverest, weirdest and most wonderful chair designs from some of the most renowned and up-and-coming designers from around the world.
The theme of 2023’s show was centered around creating harmony in the home, the environment, and in one’s self. How is this reflected in the design world? It’s all about encouraging consumers and designers to be conscious about the objects they choose with the goal of inspiring a sense of wellness and longevity.
With this in mind, here are the top 10 design chairs exhibited in the January edition of the semiannual Maison et Objet trade show.
1. The Line Chair – Riluc
Riluc is a brand which embraces innovation through a combination of engineering and design to create unique and timeless objects of only the best quality.
One of the standout items in this year’s collection is the Line Chair, which was designed and handmade by Toni Grilo. Made entirely of stainless steel, this iconic creation features a challenging craftsmanship design. Emanating luxury, the Line Chair is a sculpture in its own right and resembles the female form with its elegant curves.
2. Emergence du Fer – Lagouarre
A recognized designer of art furniture, Lagouarre’s Emergence du Fer (Emergence of Iron) characterizes the chair by its own definition. The chair features a seat, a backrest and a base in an atypical design that puts balance into question.
The materials used, including Wenge wood and bronze, symbolize the color of the Earth that nourishes us and its magnetic field. Reflecting a call to mother nature and all her power (a poignant idea considering the theme of the show), the chair symbolizes the miracle of life and the comforting balance that it brings.
3. Nereus – Marbellus
Made entirely from marble, the Nereus Chair by Marbellus was designed to be the throne for its namesake, one of the gods of the sea. Nereus is known to be the god of the south wind and can shapeshift, a concept which is reflected in the design of this chair.
4. Olympic Palabre – Hall Haus
Hall Haus was founded by four designers in early 2020 and advocates a creative approach influenced by the journey between their environment and design. The Olympic Palabre chair was a standout at this year’s Maison&Objet show.
The design of the bright yellow outdoor metal chair was inspired by the traditional chaise à palabre, a traditional African chair made from two pieces that fit together. It symbolizes the oral transmission of storytelling.
5. Galila Chair – AP Collection
One of the most eye-catching designs at this year’s event, the Galila Chair may look like a giant tarantula, but upon closer inspection, its unique and innovative design is revealed.
Handmade in Belgium by AP Collection, the chair features handmade animal plushies of premium quality. The design oozes comfort and individuality, reflecting a combination of comfort, practicality and eccentricity.
6. Bugar Easy Chair – Amo Arte
Embracing a sustainable lifestyle, Amo Arte designs are made from locally sourced natural materials with longevity and comfort in mind.
The Bugar Easy Chair was exhibited at this year’s Maison et Objet show. The chair’s design uses natural materials found in Thailand, including bamboo and sugar palm, to reflect its exotic design properties. Curved bamboo is used for the seat, showing the relationship between the natural world, sustainability, and the future of design.
7. Signet Ring Coffee Stool – Softicated
Softicated is a designer of premium, personalized interior furniture created to promote happiness and harmony. Designer Cyril Rumpler crafted the Signet Ring Coffee Stool to draw attention in any room it is placed in. Made from polyurethane, the sturdy stool is compact and easy to move, reflecting the care taken to make sure the design is practical, elegant and sophisticated no matter where it stands.
8. Tagadá Chair in pink, lilac and green – Stamuli
Stamuli AB is a Swedish brand specializing in interior design for the fashion and retail sector. A collective of architects, creatives, tech experts and visionaries, the people that make up Stamuli share a passion for detail and sustainability. Their designs embrace color, texture, and geometric shapes, leading to unique pieces that stand out wherever they are.
The Tagadá chair combines clear-cut shapes and bright pastel hues over sleek surfaces. As a result, it utterly transforms and breathes new life into any environment it inhabits.
9. Dining Chair – Devo Design
Devo Design creates durable, unique and hand-crafted products from sustainably sourced materials. They take various steps to reduce their environmental impact, including using water-based dye and lacquer and recycled packaging, as well as minimizing their carbon footprint between suppliers and freight transport.
Embracing these values, this year, Devo Design exhibited their solid ash Dining Chair at Maison et Objet, which is suitable for indoor and outdoor use. The clever fold and angular leg design mean it can stack neatly for convenience. Classic and timeless, the design proves that sustainability is in style.
10. Milano – Estetik Decor
Istanbul-based design brand Estetik Decor is a furniture and lifestyle brand driven by imagination and a desire to create pieces that are versatile and suitable for various lifestyles.
Musteyde Ufuk designed the handmade Milano dining chair, and makes use of natural, creative leathers and selected textiles to form a timeless design that was definitely a highlight at this year’s Maison et Objet show.
All images courtesy of Maison et Objet and the brands mentioned in this article.
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