Rotterdam Chair by Hella Jongerius



Live from Milan: Dutch designer Hella Jongerius has designed a new wooden chair called Rotterdam for Vitra.


More info from Jongerius:


Rotterdam Chair
Date: 2008
Commissioned by: Vitra, Basel (available here)
Type: Industrial product


Vitra asked Hella Jongerius to design a ‘standard’ chair that is stackable.


Jongerius decided to use wood, a historical and archetypical material for a chair, which offers both a simple basis ánd character through it’s detailing.

The design-process was most of all an interesting exercise in producing an affordable chair which would carry the typical Jongerius’ handwriting. The result testifies of a clever marriage between a hands-on approach to design and industrial production-methods.

Skilful refinement and high tech solutions. Because of the limits of price and production means, only the details that were essential for the character of the chair could stay. For instance the legs are left straight, bare, in order to give the object a sturdy and modern appearance.

As a consequence of this choice there were some production challenges, like how to connect the legs to the seating, which curves above the construction. The seat itself is complimented with a plastic insert, a striking colorful detail that recurs underneath the legs.

The chair has a timeless elegance and a modern sturdiness that suits its title: Rotterdam.

Posted on Wednesday April 16th 2008 at 7:33 am by . Copyright policy | Comments policy

  • K. Rimane

    Hella Jongerius = simple is beautiful.
    great work Hella!

  • Raymond

    Don’t know if I like this……. and what do they mean with affordable?

    Bourroulec Bros Steelwood chair is way beter as this one when it comes to using wood as an “historical material” in an modern day chair. IMO

  • Andrew S.

    I love this!
    Almost all of Hella’s work is phenomenal.

  • rrichard

    Doesn’t feel like it has a resonance with contemporary issues.
    I would call this: ‘slightly-decorative modernist.’

  • … I wonder why their text explaining the chair almost sounds like an excuse? It sounds like they had a big fight getting this chair right.

    Itsashame they added the fluo detailing, especially the Gstring. It distracts in a very aggressive way, unlike the other beautiful and very tactile work from Hella.

    It’d be great if the chair had more references to the charming worker sofa :)