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699 Superleggera chair , 1957

Designed by Gio Ponti
Manufactured by Cassina
Product code: CASS-699


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699 Superleggera chair by Gio Ponti for Cassina.

The design of the Superleggera (the Italian term for 'super lightweight') chair was inspired by the traditional and very simple vernacular chairs produced in the Ligurian town of Chiavari. Ponti took this traditional form and, working in close collaboration with Cassina's master craftsmen, honed it to its bare essentials. His first iteration for Cassina, the Leggera chair of 1951, was subsequently subjected to a further process of distillation, producing the Superleggera in 1957.

Using light and stable ash wood, Ponti pared back the cylindrical elements of the frame to a triangular section with edges measuring 1.8cms. He also devised an ingenious system whereby the struts forming the chair frame are slot together. The resulting structure has great stability while measuring a mere 1.7kg. As Ponti said, "the more minimal the shape, the more expressive it becomes."

Referencing his desire to produce a form pared back to the absolute minimum, Ponti described the Superleggera as "the chair-chair, devoid of adjectives". In order to test the design he submitted it to one final challenge, throwing it from the fourth storey of an apartment into the street. The chair bounced and did not break and Ponti considered himself satisfied.

Ashwood frame and cane seat. Available with frame in natural finish or lacquered in black or white.

Also available with an upolstered seat. Please enquire for details.

41w x 45d x 46/83cmh

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699 Superleggera chair



Made-to-order: 20 weeks

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Furniture orders over £1500 free for Mainland UK.

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