I believe this is one of the most famous French contributions to chair design, the model A TOLIX by Xavier Pauchard.
The Model A chair has become an icon of industrial esthetics. It’s unfailing popularity since 1934 has enabled to enter the Collections of the Vitra Design Museum, MOMA and the Pompidou Center. This mythical chair, crafted of sheet metal, has been assured by «it’s fool-proof solidity, it’s unequalled lightness, it’s easy maintenance» advantages of which can be included «inexpensive».
All merit goes to Xavier Pauchard (1880-1948) who was a pioneer of galvanisation in France. Shortly after World War 1, based in Autun, Burgundy, he found himself (a visionary and inventive entrepreneur) in charge of a flourishing manufacture of galvanised sheet-metal domesic items, which at the time, embodied household comfort. It was in 1927 that he registered the trademark TOLIX, at the same time converting to the «production of chairs, armchairs, stools and metal furnitures».
The different models (rustproof, robust and stackable) conceived by Xavier Pauchard found their place directly inside factories, offices and hospitals, as well as outside, on cafe terraces and in public parks.
We owe the revival of the brand Tolix to Chantal Andriot. It was with passion and loyality for the company that this, ex Financial Directrice, launched into the adventure, along with a handful of employees, and bought back Tolix. The only woman in a man’s world and with her knowledge she was able to give back a new vitality, in perpetuating the dual standards of quality and innovation to an industry skilled in the making of functional furniture. Today, half of Tolix’s annual turnover is for export, half of which, is for the United States.