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Andreu World Releases Chairpedia: 101 Stories of Chairs

Furniture World News



Furnishings brand Andreu World recently released its newest endeavor: Chairpedia. This design lexicon, which focuses on the unique stories behind iconic chairs from a diverse set of brands, first began to take shape five years ago. Writers and historians contributed on the subject of the chair to help spread its history and culture in a more entertaining and less academic way. These stories come to life for the first time in Chairpedia, published by prestigious La Fábrica, on the occasion of the 65th anniversary of Andreu World.

Chairpedia, directed by Ramón Úbeda, is a compilation of anecdotes and stories around the chair written by twenty authors who know its stories well: María José Balcells, Santi Barjau, Isabel Campi, Guillem Celada, Daniel Cid, Ana Domínguez, José María Faerna, Albert Fuster, Marisa García Vergara, Daniel Giralt-Miracle, Rosina Gómez-Baeza, Pilar Mellado, Oriol Pibernat, Mónica Piera, Isabel del Río, Patricio Sáiz, Carmen Sevilla, Rosalía Torrent, Ramón Úbeda and Mauricio Wiesenthal.

Equally important are the book’s graphics. It features 101 illustrations, 21 portraits, and 245 chair drawings created by Andreu World’s own Antonio Solaz, using different styles and graphic resources.

“Each chair tells us its own story and they all fit here. Even those in which the design is not the fundamental part. They add up to one hundred and one, but there could have been many more. A thousand and one chairs would be the horizon dreamed of for this unique encyclopedic work. The chair goes a long way because it is the queen piece in the history of furniture and that history can be explained with the same rigor as others that have already been written, but with a more open and plural view, with contributions from a good number of specialists , all of them accredited historians of design, architecture or art, from different generations and geographical origins. With this we did not want to pontificate, but rather learn from those who know the most and share that knowledge with the readers.

The titles of the chapters in which we have organized the content give another clue to the nature of this publication. The selection of the stories is subjective, we have chosen some, but there could have been others, because there are many more. Using illustrations instead of photographs to accompany them has also been a deliberate decision and a huge undertaking for Antonio Solaz, who has had to multiply technically in order not to bore. We have given him total freedom to interpret the writings with the confidence that the result was really an illustrated book, in form and also in function, as Bauhausians say that good chairs have to be and as Andreu World has made them for sixty-five years. Its story is the last, but it could also have been the first.

“The chair is the protagonist of tasty anecdotes collected in this volume, such as the one that recalls how the creator of Ritz hotels reduced the size of chairs and tables when he wanted a space to appear larger, or the one that tells how the humble Ibizan chair, an example of the most ancient Mediterranean tradition, entered the Museum of Decorative Arts in Frankfurt in its own right, along with designs by Mies van der Rohe, Marcel Breuer and Le Corbusier. At the same time, chairs have not infrequently contributed to changing the course of history: who does not remember Rosa Parks’ refusal to give up her seat to a white person on the bus, which sparked the largest anti-racist protest in history, or that rickety chair where the late Mrs. Bates is sitting in Psycho, which continues to give us terrifying chills.

This book talks about our collective history while reviewing the history of some of the most famous chairs, the most avant-garde designs and also the humblest. And so, page by page, we see the importance of the chair in all aspects of our lives, in an exercise of humility and gratitude: often we do not notice them, as usual, and they are nevertheless a real luxury, a tremendously valuable object not for their price or exclusivity, but for being part of our life more than we are able to see. Welcome, then, to this Chairpedia, welcome to the style or, what is the same, to the sweet sensation of having a silent companion as close as necessary. Because, as Alessandro Mendini affirms, ‘while the chair works, the man rests’.”

“We are a family business founded in 1955, currently one of the principal Spanish companies in the furniture sector. We have a strong industrial culture and we are leaders in the exportation of seats and tables. We work with the best international designers. Good design, production capacity and a commitment to sustainability are our main hallmarks. We manufacture only with woods from certified and reforested forests of their own cultivation  that carry a 100%  FSC certification. In 2007, we received the National Design Award for consistency in the use of design as a business strategy and in particular for our efforts to create opportunities for new talents and to spread the culture of design.

Our commitment to society continues to be especially aimed at the youngest, supporting emerging talent through the International Design Contest which we have organized for two decades, this year with a special edition focused on sustainability in collaboration with the World Design Organization (WDO). Also, in publications like this one, which go beyond corporate self-promotion. The Chairpedia originates from the book Stories to Read While Seated, published in 2016 in a non-venal edition, where Mauricio Wiesenthal wrote a series of sedative and sedentary stories. In 2018 we published Chairs, History of the Chair with Editorial Gustavo Gili, and in 2019 the restaurant guide Eat Well Seated with Planeta Gastro. And we continue to prepare new editorial projects. ”

About Andreu World: Andreu World has grown and evolved convinced that our philosophy, attention to detail, excellence and good design, is the fundamental guide to continue being who we are now and in the future.

At the core of Andreu World is wood, there is no other material as unique, warm and noble. Woodworking is a philosophy unto itself, it is a way of relating to the world.  Over time we have sought to maintain these qualities in all of our designs, regardless of the materials and technology employed.  Wood, in our work, is synonymous with the woodworker, we have retained the same expert hands that have learned their craft over years of experience.  For more information, visit www.andreuworld.com.

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