ineke hans + gebrüder thonet wien develop a chair to replace 'face and function' philosophy

ineke hans + gebrüder thonet wien develop a chair to replace 'face and function' philosophy

after the ‘was ist loos?’ — an exhibition winking to adolf loos’ works — is finished, ineke hans still has nice stories to tell. next to questioning design ‘was ist loos?’ aimed to give some answers too, such as the chair developed for production by gebrüder thonet wien that responded to making & making sense.

the chair is developed for production by gebrüder thonet wien
all images © jorit aust



‘designers no longer work on just one type of track, but they work hybrid and apply both handmade and machined as well as industrial methods that are within our reach nowadays’, explains ineke. ‘for long, face & function were important for design, but meaningful & making sense seem to replace that. the problem solving abilities of designers result more often in strategies and intangible outcomes that are socially engaged and, if we keep producing stuff, why not focus on smart essentials: use-centred objects to interact with on a daily basis?’

kunsthalle wien chair – side view



kunsthalle wien conference chairs can be stacked and placed in rows for talks and events. apart from practical and technical considerations, the story is also very much about designer, maker and client. the combination of a designed chair for cultural viennese spot and gebrüder thonet wien as a manufacturer gives the project a historical touch and a profound and meaningful depth that goes further than just designing another chair again.

the chairs can be placed in rows



the kunsthalle wien chair refers to the rich historical context of thonet as a producer of chairs for cultural venues in vienna with designers such as loos, wagner, and hoffmann who challenged design at their time and whose designs are still part of the gebrüder thonet collection. for the first time in ages a thonet chair was designed again for a cultural place in vienna making the story round and sound. the chair is partly made via one of the first mass production processes for furniture: steam-bending wood. this process is still vital but looking at production nowadays it is regarded as a process with a lot of hand work. to counterbalance costs and to make a viable product today, it needed different solutions, therefore also digital means of production are applied.

the chairs can be stacked



kunsthalle chair – back view


seat detail


working process in gebrüder thonet wien


in progress: making of kunsthalle wien chair


working process



designboom has received this project from our ‘DIY submissions‘ feature, where we welcome our readers to submit their own work for publication. see more project submissions from our readers here.


edited by: maria erman | designboom

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