Perhaps Mies was right: a chair could be more difficult to design than a skyscraper.
A chair, almost like a pair of shoes (used for a while), does say something about its conceiver, or its user, or both
Towards a Psychology of a Chair?
After all, perhaps Vincent Van Gogh might have agreed with us, since for him, indeed, the chair he painted was almost a self-portrait, just like the shoes he painted.
And since we talked about a great Dutch painter, let’s talk about other great Dutch artists, designers, architects.
This year we celebrate the centennial of the De Stijl movement, a modern art movement that continues to impress us with its freshness, vivacity, optimism. Equally this year there are 100 years since the famous Red & Blue Chair by Gerrit Rietveld was conceived, although the colors were added later, at the suggestion of the architect Bert van der Leck.
And since we like to celebrate, creatively, as much as possible, and to connect with important moments in our cultural history, we invite you now to design A(nother) RED AND BLUE CHAIR, one that would be, somehow, inspired by the great Dutch art movement that also inspired Rietveld.
The idea is to celebrate the creation of this chair with another chair, respecting just one requirement: that it would also be a RED & BLUE chair, even if the design would hopefully be very different.
For Piet Mondrian colors were not just “colors,” they had a symbolic, even a mystical meaning, since, as we know, Mondrian was influenced by Theosophy, that is, by mysticism.
But the greatness of the Dutch spirit is that even theosophy became, in the hands of the Dutch artists, full of unmediated joy and unspeculative pragmatism that still generates a fresh and convincing optimism.
So maybe the new “Red & Blue Chair” would also be optimistic and expressing what the De Stijl movement tried to express: a desire to renew not just art, but also, and more importantly, Life itself.
Design a new RED & BLUE chair!
Make it as original as possible! But please use, mainly, these two colors, together, perhaps, with black and a little bit of yellow.
These are the only requirements.
Let’s dedicate this chair to Gerrit Rietveld and to the great De Stijl art movement, both born in 1917. We will try to persuade the city of Leiden, where this art movement was born, to exhibit the best works received, as part of the centennial celebrations. Please register before July 1st. There is a registration fee of 40 euro for architects and designers and 20 euro for students.The deadline to receive your works is July 15th, 2017. We will exhibit all the works received in Vienna, in August, as part of a one month long architecture and design festival we will hold there.
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