Design Enzo Mari - 1985
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Chair. Polished or black painted aluminum alloy frame. Seat and back in polypropylene covered in cowhide 95 in the colours indicated on our colour card.

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From design to product

Tonietta chair is an eloquent example of product born from a close and fertile collaboration between firm and designer. Started in 1981 the chair’s project ended in 1985 following constant engineering research necessarily undertaken to exploit a technology, the one of aluminium die casting, that - expensive - had so far been little used in the manufacturing of a domestic chair.


“I was particularly hostile towards fashion that wanted objects, including chairs, overloaded with technological or typological arrogance of design: I wanted to design the simplest chair possible, almost obvious, not an object that appears different at any cost. After careful analysis I saw that among modern chairs, Thonet are the ones that best embody the idea of an archetypal image, and so to define the character of my chair I decided to dialogue with this single example of an upper class piece, full of semantic and symbolic values.”


The Tonietta chair won the prestigious Compasso d’Oro Award in 1987 with the following motivation of the jury: “This chair represents a great lesson on style and culture - it calls to mind an archetype, avoiding all trite imitations of morphological elements”.