Rare and Early Model 'Womb' Chair with Metal Shell by Eero Saarinen for Knoll
Eero Saarinen for Knoll, early model 'Womb' chair, fabric and metal, United States, design 1946-1948, production 1950s.
This shelled, cushioned lounge chair is designed between 1946 and 1948 by Eero Saarinen. The chair was a specific request by Florence Knoll, who thought it was time for a 'big one'. It was at Florence Knoll's specific request as she claims to have been sick and tired of structured chairs which held you in one position. She said she wanted 'a chair in which was like basket full of pillows - something I could curl up in'. Eero designed the chair and did the prototype himself too.
This specific chair is an early model, since the shell is made of metal, while later editions were produced with a fiberglass shell. Another difference between this model and the later productions is the opening in the backrest. This early model is very rare to find and for the collector a wonderful addition to your collection.
The chair is upholstered in a grey fabric, which is in good condition. It shows minimal signs of age and use. The piece can be reupholstered if desired. The experienced craftsman of our in-house atelier are specialist on re-upholstery of design furniture. With high attention for the original, they make sure every piece retains it's value and is ready for the many years to come. Please ask our advisors for about the almost endless possibilities we have to offer.
Knoll International was founded in New York by the 26 year old German Hans Knoll (1914-1955) in 1938. Hans' father, Walter Knoll was a true modernist and furniture manufacturer who had a reputation for quality. When Hans Knoll died at a young age his wife Florence Knoll took over and under her influence the company flourished and created its best designs. She designed and led the company where she coperated with talented designers such as Eero Saarinen, Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, Richard Schultz and Harry Bertoia.
Eero Saarinen (1910-1961) was a Finnish-American architect who helped to shape the American postwar architecture of progression and optimism. Saarinen designed several airports and worked for large coorporate clients such as IBM and General Motors. This meant that the identity of Saarinen's architecture went hand in hand with the identity of these companies. His design was also used in many companies and homes and thus helped to shape the aesthetic landscape of the United States in the 1950s and 1960s.
- Merkel, Jayne. Eero Saarinen. New York: Phaidon, 2005, p. 57 and 61.