It appears that a history on the craft of seating is currently on display across the gallery of Leland Little Auction’s September 13-15th, 2012, auction. The chairs range from an exceptional 1750 New York Queen Anne Side Chair (Lot 534) to a set of 1971 Verner Panton model 120-S wire chairs (Lot 123). Among the lots consisting of Mid-Century Modern, majority are chairs.
The classics in Mid-Century Modern seating are represented with Marcel Breuer’s “Wassily Chair,” (Lot 129) and a group of Russell Woodard “Sculptura” chairs (Lot 128). The rarities of Mid-Century Modern seating are also represented in four Herbert von Thaden Lounge Chairs (Lots 118 & 119), the Verner Panton “Pantonova” Dining Set (Lot 123), and Hans Wegner’s “Folding Chair” (Lot 122).
The Herbert von Thaden and Thaden-Jordan seating (Lots 118-120) are from the same collection out of a private North Carolina estate. These chairs were purchased around 1948, direct from the Thaden Jordan Furniture Corporation of Roanoke, Virginia. Both Herbert von Thaden and his wife, Louise, were heavily involved in aviation during the 1920s-30s. Herbert developed three types of aircraft including the T-1 Argonaut, while Louise won several awards in aviation including the “First Transcontinental Women’s Air Derby, 1929.” The Thaden’s love and understanding for aviation likely explains the aerodynamic distinctiveness seen in the Lounge Chairs. While Thaden designed his Lounge Chair, a couple by the name of Charles and Ray Eames formed their very own machine to manufacture molded plywood chairs, formally named the “Kazam!” machine. While both Thaden and Eames use similar construction in their molded plywood chairs, Thaden uses a more unconventional design with one solid piece of curving plywood, which forms the back, seat and front legs, all bolted to a ‘V’ shaped adjustable stand. The design is minimalist and aerodynamic while featuring the innovativeness of Mid Century America.
At first glance, it may appear that Lot 123, the Verner Panton “Pantonova” Dining Set, is a chromed wire sculpture. After a further study one may note the sides of the “sculpture” pull out to form a circular table and deceptively form fitting chairs. This set was originally manufactured in 1971, at the height of Panton’s career. Distinguished three times with the International Design Award, USA, and having apprenticed under Arne Jacobsen, Panton created the “Pantonova” line of furnishings for the Varna restaurant in Arhus, Denmark. Varna’s décor was extraordinary, to say the least. The ceilings covered with a rainbow of brightly colored spheres, sparkling chrome chandeliers, floor to ceiling windows, vivid carpet reflecting the colors of the ceiling, and the furnishings of chrome Pantonova design shimmering with the surrounding colors.
Wegner introduced transportable modern in his PP512 Folding Chair, Lot 122. Composed of a light wood and cane, this folding chair can easily be taken room to room or even hung on the wall for storage. The design is such that its folded position is as interesting and sculptural as it is open.
The modern chairs selected for the September 15th auction display in their designs a more conceptual idea for “the seat” while also exhibiting the many ideas of movement in modernity. We are thrilled and honored to offer these quality items and more in our three day September catalog auction. Call now to reserve your seat at this special event.