Two stacking cream white lacquered plywood side tables. Isokon UK.
Designed in 1936 Breuer whilst in the UK began to explore plywood as a material. During that period Breuer designed several classic modernist pieces that were put into production by Jack Pritchard of Isokon. We believe that these are a 60s production by John Alan. London.
Manufactured in the 1950s/60s.
Please note: We also have one other single table available – The table is a similar size to the larger one (…but is not the third one to the set) We believe that they were purchased from John Alan company in London in the 1960s where they sold individually (we have a John Alan pamphlet from the period to show this).
The Wilhelmiina 32 chair was designed in 1959. The legs are constructed in laminated birch with “fountain bend”. The suspended seat and back are in black lacquered moulded plywood.
The design is reminiscent of Alvar Aalto, whom Tapiovaara counted as a strong influence. In World War II Tapiovaara designed dugouts and field furniture to the Finnish Army, a challenging task given that only local wood and simple tools could be used, and no nails or screws were available.
Manufacturers label to the underside.
Ref: Svenskberg, Aila (ed.): Ilmari Tapiovaara: Life and Design. Translated by Jüri Kokkonen. Helsinki: Designmuseo, 2014
Isokon Long Chair (early 1960s production) – Upholstered plywood
The Hungarian-born, modernist architect and furniture designer was one of the masters of Modernism. Breuer extended the sculptural vocabulary he had developed in the carpentry shop at the Bauhaus into a personal architecture that made him one of the world’s most popular architects at the peak of 20th-Century design.
Breuer came to Britain in the mid-1930s following the closure of the Bauhaus by the Nazis. He became acquainted with Jack Pritchard the owner of Isokon, who suggested he design furniture for the company. Pritchard had become interested in the plywood designs of Alvar Aalto and wanted to produce similar furniture himself. The Long Chair was an adaptation of a previous design for an aluminium framed chaise Breuer had produced in 1932.
The Long Chair was designed by Breuer for the British Isokon company in 1935-36 and is considered one of the most important pieces of furniture to emerge from the inter-war modern movement.
In 1968, Pritchard licensed John Alan Designs, based in Camden, London to produce the Long Chair – John Alan manufactured the chair according to larger measurements in order to make the chair more 60s-friendly. This chair is thought to pre-date that period as it still retains the older smaller measurements. The upholstery is showing distinct signs of age and use.
Rare version of the “Kakkonen” stackable armchair No. 2. /15. Manufactured by Oy Huonekalu-ja Rakennustyötehdas Ab, Turku, Finland. 1930s.
Finmar label to the underside.
A good example of Aaltos formative years and early designs; this chair is made from laminated and solid birch and retains its original black finish.
Co-designed by Alvar Aalto and Otto Korhonen in 1930, the chair was manufactured over the years as four differing versions. This version is the rarest of the four. The design is similar to one of other versions in that the front legs protrude at the side. However, the front edge of the seat on this version is formed as a more severe right angle as shown in the detail fig.1 (The other version with protruding legs was rounded at the front). It also has a small decorative corner feature when seen from the front that is reminiscent of traditional Chinese chairs.
The chair was illustrated in Alvar Aalto Designer, Alvar Aalto museum p.69 and in Alvar & Aino design collection Bischofberger p.21