Well Transparent Chair by Ron Arad


London designer Ron Arad has created a polycarbonate version of his famous Well Tempered Chair for the forthcoming exhibition of his work at the Barbican in London.

Called Well Transparent Chair, the piece is made in a limited edition of 100 and consists of bent plastic sheets bolted together under tension.

The design is on show at the Timothy Taylor Gallery in London but will move to the Barbican next week when the exhibition opens.

Ron Arad: Restless will be on show at the Barbican 18 February 2010 to 16 May 2010. Dezeen are online media partner for the exhibition - look out for our movies featuring Arad talking about the show and his work on Dezeen soon.

More stories about Ron Arad on Dezeen:

Design Museum Holon (September 2009)
No Discipline at MOMA (July 2009)
Ron Arad at Timothy Taylor Gallery (April 2009)
Guarded Thoughts (November 2008)
Rotator for Teuco (April 2008)
Restless at Friedman Benda gallery (September 2007)
Ingo Maurer (2007)

Photos courtesy Ron Arad Associates.

Here's some more information from the gallery:


Ron Arad - Well Transparent Chair
8 - 20 February 2010 / 4 - 12 March 2010

Timothy Taylor Gallery is delighted to present a new work by Ron Arad, created to benefit Barbican Art Gallery in conjunction with their forthcoming major survey: Ron Arad: Restless.

In 1986, Ron Arad designed Well Tempered Chair, bolting sheets of steel together to form a chair full of tension. Using the archetypal club chair as its model, its design is simple - four pieces of tempered steel form the shape - two for the arms, one for the seat, and one for the back. The engineering of the piece is plain to see and according to Arad 'what you see is what you get - there is no illusion'.

Well Transparent Chair, 2010 is a contemporary re-interpretation of the original. The basic architecture of the chair remains the same, but it has been re-imagined by Arad in transparent polycarbonate, radically altering the personality of the piece.

Both 'tempered' chairs subvert our expectation of how a chair should behave. The chair's apparent immateriality induces an anxiety about its ability to support us -  it is, in fact, comfortable and sound - unexpectedly so. This playful duplicity between how a work looks and how it feels is one of the reasons why the original 'Well Tempered Chair' has proved such an enduring work.

This new piece embodies much of what makes Arad such an important figure - for all of its modernity and technical sophistication there is something very human about it.

Produced in an edition of 100 signed and numbered pieces, the Well Transparent Chair will be available exclusively from the Timothy Taylor Gallery and at Barbican Art Gallery priced at £5,000. A portion of the proceeds from the sale of each chair will benefit Barbican Art Gallery.

Ron Arad: Restless is the first major exhibition of Arad’s work in the UK. It opens at Barbican Art Gallery on 18 February and runs until 16 May 2010. Spanning three decades, the show traces the development of Arad’s designs from his early post- punk approach, assembling works from readymade parts to his technologically-advanced sculptural objects made of highly polished metals. Featuring a dramatic installation design by Ron Arad Associates using the latest LED display technology, the exhibition also includes architectural designs and instantly recognisable mass-produced objects. Well Transparent Chair is one of over 150 works presented in the exhibition.

Timothy Taylor Gallery represents Ron Arad in the UK and mounted a critically acclaimed exhibition of his recent work in 2009.

Ron Arad
‘Well-Transparent Chair’, 2010
Polycarbonate and wing nuts
80 x 80 x 100 cm
Edition of 10o

Posted on Thursday February 11th 2010 at 3:50 pm by . Copyright policy | Comments policy

  • peeween

    AAAAAAAAAAAAAwesome!! true- copied his own principle, but admit it: it’s genius!

  • Rembo

    Ack! If Rembo could eat those bolts and make them disappear, he would! Beautiful concept, but bad idea to bring so much attention to the fasteners! Imagine all those loopy thingies, all squishy and bouncy and totally transparent…

  • Funny: Starck said about Louis Ghost, transparency is a weakness
    See also the chair of a young french designer from Peru Frederico Otero ex Domus Academy de Milan, Catacaos


  • An interesting design. Translucent, polycarbonate and lucite furnishings are dominating home trend; perhaps most recognizably with Philippe Stark’s ghost chairs. The lines and curbature of this chair are entirely fluid, which is why I think the bolts add a much needed roughness and structure to the design; a fusion of masculine and feminine elements. Its structured plastic material takes new form when bent and curved to mimic an armchair. Most likely uncomfortable and impracticle-but a work of art and a novelty none the less.

  • ness

    those armrests are awesome for keeping magazinez … not bad

  • I remember when Arad had that cool shop in Covent Garden in the mid-80’s. I’m glad that I have been able to follow the incredible growth of such a major talent.

  • modular

    I seriously dislike this. Yes, I’m a polite hater.

    Feed me good things. By the way… what are the Bouroullecs up to? :)

  • charlie chan

    iiiiiiinteresting to see mr. Arad recreating his past project.

    Although, I have to say. The chair, despite its wonderful aesthetic, sucks. My lower back starts to ache, and blood circulation stops after sitting for more than 5 min. I hate sitting on the Well Tempered and I assume Well Transparent Chair is no different.

  • Somebody had their thinking cap on?????

  • me

    love the green lit picture….it becomes almost……..the same chair but lit up green

  • All I know is: Ah pity the fool what’s gotta keep that suckah clean.

  • tanya telford – T

    well transparent and well good, really like being able to see the construction and love the curves of material, if it is a little uncomfortable after a while surely you could throw a cushion on to it?, (not sure what Mr Ron Arad would think …. on second thoughts i don’t think he’d mind). I really look forward to seeing the show,

  • Arash Dailami

    another creative masterpiece.

  • Lord D

    And if a naked Ron sat in it, we could all nod and say…

    “I can clearly see you’re nuts!”

  • Neo

    Sometimes you don’t have anything else to say, and then you repeat one of your old sentences.
    The wise man would have just stay in silence.

  • among many things about Arad’s work, i find amazing the way he explores form and materials. looking forward to seeing the retrospective at the barbican.