Vladimir Kagan for Dreyfuss ‘Multi-Position Reclining’ Chair in Teak
Vladimir Kagan for Dreyfuss, ‘Multi-position Reclining’ chair model VK 100, teak, fabric Arbus/004 Prugna by Dedar Milano, plastic, chrome-plated metal, United States, circa 1956
The first original ‘Multi-position Reclining’ chair is designed around 1956 by Vladimir Kagan. This particular design is adapted later on by incorporating a pull-out footrest based on aluminum links that can be slid into the seat’s concave cavity despite its convex shape. This well thought through mechanism demonstrates his great eye for detail and high-level of craftsmanship. The seat itself can be adjusted in its angle which allows the user to transform the lounge chair into a chaise longue. The pure beauty of nature is truly what is on show with this piece. The wooden frame in teak embodies striking curvaceous lines and shapes mimicking leaves and arboreal forms; one form leads to the next. The seat is upholstered in a purple-colored fabric by Dedar Milano that is in great harmony with the warm tone of the wood. Despite its inventiveness and functionality, Kagan only managed to produce a total of only fifty chairs of this model, with the help of clock designer Robert Gardell.
Vladimir Kagan (1927-2016) was born in Germany and grew up in the United States where his father opened a cabinet shop. Later, Kagan joined the family business. Here the designer experimented with organically sculpted wood in works that became the hallmarks of his career. Kagan himself explained that his father always said 'measure three times and cut once' whereas Kagan did exactly the opposite. He also believed that there was no way that ratio could replace dumb luck. Kagan's furniture has the extraordinary ability to completely change the landscape of the room, even with a single object.
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