Aluminium Chair EA 124
by Charles en Ray Eames
The chairs of the Aluminium Group are among the most famous creations of Charles and Ray Eames and have become classics of 20th century design.
What makes this design so special is the way in which the materials are connected to each other. The upholstery is fastened inside the aluminium profile and is then simply stretched over it. This transforms its functionality from a mere cover to an integral, weight carrying part of the structure. The chair adapts itself to the shape of the body and provides much comfort, even with little upholstery.
The Aluminium Chair was designed in the mid 1950s, specifically for a home in Columbus (Indiana, US) that was built by Eero Saarinen and Alexander Girard. Charles and Ray Eames abandoned the traditional dish shape and wove a tight web of textile and leather, which was elastic in between the two side components. This elastic shape was more capable of following the contours of the body and, thus, increase the level of comfort. In the anniversary brochure, producer Vitra states that the chair was the ‘perfect balance between strict functionality, structure, the human anatomy and mechanical rationality’.
The chair celebrated its 50th anniversary in 2008. The US Post issued a postal stamp set as an ode to Charles and Ray Eames and their designs. The Aluminium Chair is depicted on the 42 cent stamp.