Roodblauwe Stoel – Gerrit Thomas Rietveld

Roodblauwe Stoel

Gerrit Thomas Rietveld

Vitra Design Museum: 100 Masterpieces

This constructivist chair designed by Gerrit Rietveld is a masterpiece of modern furniture design. The “linear and planar” characteristics of this chair is in sync with the material qualities of cardboard. The pieces: looking like geometric lines and planes look like they are sliding into one another, reminded me very much of the way cardboard furniture pieces are constructed. The aesthetics of the De Stijl are therefore in my opinion ideal for constructing cardboard furniture

The idea of making something that is considered trashy/temporary/ non durable etc become high class, raising its value with design.

The form of abstraction Rietveld adopts here bears comparison to painter Piet Mondrian. Mondrian, and later Rietveld, were among the artists and architects who grouped around Theo van Doesburg and his journal De Stijl, and whose radical concepts had a lasting impact on twentieth- century art. Both Mondrian and Rietveld reduced given realities to their linear and planar characteristics: where Mondrian took landscapes as his model, Rietveld focused on the concept of a traditional, massive armchair, which he transformed into a geometric entity.


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