n°13/ And Panton Created a Chair

April 2012

by Nathalie Azoulai

Danish designer Vernon Panton first created his celebrated injection-moulded plastic chair in 1960, but the technical challenges posed by the Panton were such that the first commercial model only went on sale in 1967. An easily stacked, S-shaped chair whose qualities go far beyond its practical advantages, the Panton is also a symbol: moulded to form a single piece without joints, it’s an everyday object that feels like it’s a place where some shiny, coloured liquid just happened to settle without any human intervention. In other words, a design that is entirely natural and pure illusion. Note also how the polished effect plays with the light on the edges making the chair look almost alive, giving a sense that it is breathing or has a heartbeat. In the image of a God, the designer created the natural.


Vernon Panton

 James Day