When Gerrit Rietveld designed his Red and Blue chair in 1918, he introduced a radically new form of intersecting vertical and horizontal planes. The primary-color scheme–the red, yellow, and blue accents–associated with the de Stijl group (and its most famous contributor, Piet Mondrian) was added later, in 1923. Since then, many have found inspiration in its stripped-down yet bold form. The latest evolution comes courtesy of Jan Plecháčhttp, a young Czech designer, who re-created the negative outline of the famous chair in metal wire.
Called Icon 03, the piece is part of Plecháč’s thesis project at Prague’s Academy of Arts, Architecture, and Design, in which he reinterpreted other classics such as the Panton chair. In this case, the designer retained both Rietveld’s sculptural shape and commitment to mass production–the master always intended to make Red and Blue available to the masses and used lumber in dimensions that were readily available at the time.
But by applying new technology, Plecháč has added a dimension of functionality to the original: the wire is powder-coated, making it suitable for outdoor use. “The Icons seating furniture pieces are an attempt to wipe the line between interior and exterior furniture,” Plecháč tells Co.Design. “It is an attempt to find stories of iconic forms in new contexts of a mentally contrasting environment.”
Icon 03 is available through the Dutch furniture maker NgispeN.