4 Rietveld Zig Zag Chairs and Table at Christie’s Amsterdam
Photo thanks to Christie’s
This set was designed and made by Gerrit Rietveld for Annie and Carel Bendien, friends of Gerrit. They gave it to a niece where it stayed up to the present day when it was auctioned at Christie’s in Amsterdam.
On May 23rd, 2007 this 1927 Rietveld Steel Chair was also auctioned at Christie’s Amsterdam.
It shows that not only Mart Stam was involved in applying steel rods to chairs, but here the rods were solid as opposed to the hollow tubes Mart applied. The use of plywood was also very innovating in those days.
White Rietveld Red Blue Chair record at Christies Amsterdam
Photo thanks to Christie’s
Not many people will know (at least I didn’t know) that before Dutch Chair Designer Gerrit Rietveld painted the Red Blue Rietveld Chair red and blue, inspired as he then must have been by Piet Mondriaan, another member of De Stijl Groep (pronounce as:”the Style Group”) he made several mono colored ones.
Today this white lacquered example has been sold at a Christie’s auction in Amsterdam for a record amount of Euro 264,000, while Christie’s estimate was between Euro 50,000 and 80,000. Please do not forget the extras for Christie’s on top of that amount!,
As I find Christie’s lot note very interesting I will quote it here entirely:
The present chair was designed by Gerrit Th. Rietveld as a special commission for Til Brugman in 1923. De Stijl painter Vilmos Huszar restyled the interior of her house in The Hague using the furniture of his fellow De Stijl member Gerrit Rietveld to complement the interior. In the room a multi-colored end table by Gerrit Th. Rietveld was also included, which was sold on the 16th of November 2004 in these rooms.
The first examples of the Red-Blue chair were constructed of unpainted wood. After Rietveld joined De Stijl the first painted examples of the chair were created. It was not until 1923, the same year that this white version for Til Brugman was executed, that the first example with red and blue was completed. The use of primary colors on the Red-Blue chair was probably inspired by Theo van Doesburg and Vilmos HuszÃƒÂ¡r.
Til Brugman was the first Dutch lesbian avant-garde author, who wrote novels and Dadaistic poems. She became acquainted with many of De Stijl artist through her friend Piet Mondriaan. Although her artistic contributions to De Stijl are minimal, behind the scenes her assistance was more substantial; she mediated in the sales of works of art for (amongst others) Piet Mondriaan and translated many articles for the magazine De Stijl. In some of her novels events from her life with members of De Stijl can be discovered.
On contemporary photographs of her interior can be seen how much the interior was modernized by the restyling of Vilmos HuszÃƒÂ¡r. This chair was thought to be lost, but was recovered from the property of a private collector.
Update August 8, 2008: Christies changed its lay out in the meantime. The chair UK pnd 264,000 (= US $ 355,724).
Red Blue Rietveld Chair (Photo Moma) ZigZag by Jenner
Dutch architect and designer Gerrit Rietveld after whom the Amsterdam art school Gerrit Rietveld Academie has been named, designed the Red and Blue (in 1917) and Zig Zag (in 1932) chairs which are world famous.
Red-Blue and Zig Zag are still being produced by Cassina in their Master “I Maestri” Series.
In 2004 a grandson and a great grandson of Gerrit have formed a company Rietveld by Rietveld to start again with the production of several of Gerrit’s furniture designs, because as they say: There is more to Rietveld than the Red-Blue and ZigZag only: All in all there are 215 Rietveld furniture designs. So there remains a lot to do for them.
I tried to find a flashier photo of ZigZag on the web, but found this photo of Edward Jenner, a Dutch architect who after obtaining the book “How to construct Rietveld furniture” made his own ZigZag. Although it is not the nicest photo, I believe his ZigZag copy is very much how Rietveld himself would have made it. In addition I adore the Rietveld Babychair copy Jenner made for his daughter:
Rietveld Baby Chair by Jenner