This high chair by Vienna designers Patrycja Domanska and Felix Gieselmann gives coffeehouse patrons a view over the heads of others.
Entitled Homage to Karl, the chair is designed in tribute to Austrian author Karl Kraus, who is said to have written much of his literature in Viennese cafes whilst observing day-to-day activity.
The chair was presented during Vienna Design Week 2011 as part of the coffeehouse exhibition The Great Viennese Café: A Laboratory, to which eight designers contributed furniture and objects.
Sitters climb a wooden ladder to get onto the chair and can place their drinks onto or inside two attached boxes that also serve as an armrest.
Here's a little more text from the designers:
"Homage to Karl" by Patrycja Domanska and Felix Gieselmann
Initiated by the Museum of Applied Arts Vienna (MAK) Patrycja Domanska and Felix Gieselmann designed for the exhibition and temporary coffee house "THE GREAT VIENNESE CAFÉ: A LABORATORY. Phase II and Experimental Design" an unusual, single piece of furniture in remembrance of Karl Kraus’s coffeehouse-based self-discovery and other experiences:
The Viennese coffee house is a special institution, whose meaning outreaches the sum of its coffee variations.
Who held something on himself, sat down not only in the coffee house to write, but also to correspond to the picture of a contemporary author. Owing to their written documentations of that environment, the coffee house has the value of a cultural heritage.
“Homage to Karl” is a study of this microcosm and translates that narcissism in view of the topical context of the scene coffee house and his liven by the visitors. The literary descriptions of the approach and selfrepresentation of the belletrists are used as a basis and are turned to the homage to them and their meaning for the institution of the coffee house.
The raised hide creates moments of selfstaging but also offers the possibility of the retreat, both caused by the rise of the seat. Not only the actual position of viewer and looked are put in a new tension relation, but also their points of view to each other are in a new composition.
A personal field serves for the preservation of private objects as well as as a table and allows by his mirrored surface, on the one hand, tohis user, on the other hand, also to the surrounding people a constant back coupling of the own appearance.