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Even if Ludwig Mies van der Rohe’s recognizable Barcelona Chair today anchors modern interiors around the globe, it debuted 90 years ago. The celebrated architect was commissioned to design the German national pavilion for the 1929 Barcelona International Exposition.

The pavilion would host a reception for Spain’s King Alphonso III and German officials. As van der Rohe stated, since Majesty was expected, he was to design an “important chair, a very elegant chair. The government was to receive a king….The chair had to be…monumental. In those circumstances, you couldn’t just use a kitchen chair.” A kitchen chair it most certainly wasn’t! 

Barcelona Chair

Putting a twist on the scissor shape of seats reserved for dignitaries in ancient Rome, the van der Rohe chair’s swooping, chrome-plated crossed bars create a dramatic cantilevered perch. The furniture design globe snapped to attention, and the Barcelona Chair reproductions have been in continuous commercial production ever since. 

Source: Eye For Design

While materials have evolved since van der Rohe designed this masterpiece – the original Barcelonas’ horsehair-stuffed, pigskin cushions are now urethane foam and polyester fiberfill upholstered in leather cut, hand-welted with cowhide – the shape has remained! According to mid century modern design specialist Michael Jefferson, “I’m not sure there’s a more singular expression of Mies’ aesthetic and rigor than the Barcelona Chair.” It’s his greatest work by far!

Ready to consider the iconic Barcelona Chair replica from Barcelona Designs to furnish your home? You won’t just be investing in a random furniture piece – you’ll be investing in timeless style that’ll elevate your home!