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From Bauhaus to greenhouse

Words:
Jan-Carlos Kucharek

True to the ethos that ‘nothing is so good it can’t be better’, furniture company Thonet has released its classic designs for Mart Stam and Marcel Breuer’s tubular steel chairs and tables in, yes, seven colours. But before you join SOB (Save Our Breuers), buy them and get them re-chromed, consider that the firm looked to Bauhaus master Johannes Itten’s colour circle ‘as orientation’. Quite what the Mazdaznan-cult-worshipping vegetarian Expressionist would have made of this we’ll never know, but his resistance to Gropius’ aesthetics of mass-production prompted his resignation. Perhaps knowing that Breuer’s chrome is now being dipped in his ‘chocolate brown’, revenge is indeed sweet?

 

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