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Vitra Miniatura Ribbon chair, Paulin: The enthusiastic, progressive atmosphere of the 1960s and Pierre Paulin's sculptural training were influential factors in the design of the Ribbon Chair. The curving loops of its shape, covered in colourful upholstery fabrics or psychedelic patterns by Jack Lenor Larsen, give it a captivating, futuristic appeal.
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Vitra Miniatura Ribbon chair, Paulin: The enthusiastic, progressive atmosphere of the 1960s and Pierre Paulin's sculptural training were influential factors in the design of the Ribbon Chair. The curving loops of its shape, covered in colourful upholstery fabrics or psychedelic patterns by Jack Lenor Larsen, give it a captivating, futuristic appeal. Pierre Paulin himself interpreted the Ribbon Chair as a "coup de pied à la lune". A famous advertisement shows the Ribbon Chair on a runway with a jet taking off above it. The seat, backrest and armrests of the chair have a unified metal frame that is completely covered with foam upholstery and stretch fabric. The seat is mounted on a lacquered pedestal made of pressed wood. The development of the Ribbon Chair was facilitated by technological innovations during the Sixties, which led to the production of inexpensive synthetic foams. This period also saw the introduction of novel elastic fabrics that could be used to envelop a complex contoured shape without folds or intricate seams. The biomorphic, slightly resilient seat of the Ribbon Chair allows a wide variety of sitting positions and provides a high degree of seating comfort. Bent tubular steel frame, foam padding covered with two-way stretch fabric, lacquered pedestal made of form-pressed plywood, plastic glides.
The collection of the Vitra Design Museum en miniature: The Miniatures Collection of the Vitra Design Museum covers the most important pieces from the international history of design from 1850 up to the present. The construction, materials and colours of the miniatures correspond precisely to the historical original. Extensive development work was carried out to adapt the manufacturing techniques to the requirements of miniaturization. Because they are so true to the originals, the miniatures are not only collector’s objects for furniture enthusiasts, but also serve as ideal illustrative material for universities and design schools. At present, the collection encompasses 80 models on a 1:6 scale with further pieces being continually added. The models come in their own wooden box and are accompanied by a descriptive brochure with details on the design. Net proceeds from the sale of the miniatures go towards the exhibitions and workshops of Vitra Design Museum.
Miniaturization means concentration: Vitra Design Museum faithfully replicates furniture design classics in miniaturized three-dimensional form. Many of these designs, like the chaise longue by Le Corbusier or the red-blue chair by Gerrit Rietveld, are as widely known today as the most celebrated works of art and are coveted by museums and collectors the world over. These miniatures illustrate at a glance what design means and what role it plays in the industrial production process. The clear and concentrated world of the miniatures yields a fascinating reflection of the stylistic diversity of contemporary design and provides a unique way of accessing the history of furniture design.
The manufacture of the miniatures: Vitra Design Museum has one of the most renowned collections of industrial furniture design – from the infancy of industrial mass production in the mid-19th century through the designs of functionalistic Modernism up to the postmodern furniture objects of the present day. With its many exhibits, the collection provides us with an ideal base for developing new furniture miniatures. Model builders measure the historical original in the museum collection, scale this down to one sixth of the original size and compile technical documentation. Subsequently, materials and manufacturing techniques are tested over a period of several months: the shapes are formed, materials and processes are selected, art historical research on the objects is conducted and then the production sequences are defined.