José Zanine Caldas Boomerang Lounge Chairs
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José Zanine Caldas for Móveis Artisticos Z, pair of 'Boomerang' chairs, plywood and fabric, Brazil, 1950s.
This Boomerang lounge chair by José Zanine Caldas emphasizes the innovative use of plywood the designer is known for in his earlier years. During this period, Caldas founded Móveis Artisticos Z, a compay specialized in semi-mass produced plywood furniture. With his design-oriented view of industrial processes, it was possible to produce an entire side of a chair out of a single piece of cut plywood. This chair is an outstanding example, consisting of four boomerang shaped pieces that together form one chair, hence its name 'Boomerang' José Zanine Caldas (1919-2001) was born in Belmonte, Brazil. His designs are known for their raw, natural and sculptural qualities. Caldas was an autodidact and started his career as designer in the construction industry. He worked as a model builder for designers and architects including Oscar Niemeyer, Lúcio COSTA and Oswaldo Arthur. In 1948 he founded the company Móveis Artisticos Z, and there he produced semi-mass produced plywood furniture. But already two years later, he decided to leave the company and return to his home state Bahia. He also worked as a building model teacher at the University of Brasília but when Brazil underwent a military coop in 1964 he had to leave his position and went to live in the beach town Nova Viçosa. Here, he began to work with local materials, and combined the colonial aesthetic with the new modernist style. It was through his experience and development in style that is known to stay close to the truth of the material and that abandoned the rigid rules and objectivism of the Modernist era. Caldas held a strong believe that man should live in harmony with nature. And thus he became a strong protector of Brazilian forests. He established the Foundation Center for the Development of the Application of Brazilian Woods (DAM). Zanine kept his natural visions alive, and would plant a new tree in place of any tree that was taken down for one of his projects.
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