Armchair ± 1805-1810
Jean -Joseph Chapuis BE
painted walnut (probably), rattan, rope, bronze
donation by mister and missus Marc Van der Eecken, 1981
The Austrian Michael Thonet became internationally famous in around 1850 with his bentwood furniture, such as the rocking chair that you can see a bit further along. Thonet was not the first to use this technique, however, since the Brussels cabinetmaker Jean -Joseph Chapuis, who had trained in Paris, designed this Empire armchair at the start of the nineteenth century. The shape of the chair refers to a bronze folding chair from Roman antiquity. Its slender forms were only possible thanks to a pioneering technical process: steam was used to give decorative curves to thin layers of wood that had been superposed on one another, while the narrow legs remained firm. Chapuis was thereby one of the earliest cabinetmakers to use laminated wood to manufacture a very light chair with bent forms – a milestone in the history of design.
dank aan Anna Bergmans.