Harry Bertoia
(1915, San Lorenzo, Italy – 1978, Barto, USA)

Diamond armchair



The armchairs and the stool were made of wire net, a material never previously used in such a way in furniture production. As early as in the nineteenth century people have made garden chairs of steel wire. However, Bertoia’s research of sculptural volume and its relation with the surrounding environment led to a modern use of wire net. By means of its form, Diamond and Bird contributed to a new design that humanized mannerist forms of modernism.

The designing of the Diamond armchair and other pieces of that collection took two years, and it was carried out with the support of the Knoll family that set no limits, even when it was clear that the Diamond armchair was easier made manually than by a machine. Bertoia had not been the only one who explored the shaping of the steel net in furniture production. Almost simultaneously, Charles Eames, Bartoia studied and cooperated with during the war years, and his wife Ray, also designed a collection of steel net made furniture (1951-1952).

The armchair Bird was named like that because it resembles a bird with open wings. Its functional addition is the stool.