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Cini Boeri Ghost Chair Fiam Italia 1987

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Cini Boeri Ghost Chair Fiam Italia, 1987
By Cini Boeri, FIAM
Located in Roosendaal, Noord Brabant
This is for the famous Ghost chair designed by Cini Boeri and Tomu Katayanagi and manufactured by

Vintage 1980s Italian Mid-Century Modern Lounge Chairs



Cini Boeri Ghost Chair Fiam Italia, 1987
Cini Boeri Ghost Chair Fiam Italia, 1987
H 36.62 in W 36.23 in D 30.71 in
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Cini Boeri for sale on 1stDibs

Had Cini Boeri been a man, the Milanese architect and furniture designer, who died in 2020 at age 96, might be regarded today on par with such visionaries of the mid-20th century as Gio Ponti or Marco Zanuso. She worked with both. Although she’s well known and deeply respected in Italy, her renown elsewhere has been more akin to a cult following.

“I admire the work she did across architecture, interiors and furniture,” designer Faye Toogood says of Boeri’s impact. “She practiced architecture during a time when it was considered that women were too fragile to work outside.”

Boeri was one of very few women of her era to graduate from Milan Polytechnic with an architecture degree, which she did in 1951. Her illustrious career hinged on the strict economy of her designs and limited palette of materials. For example, her innovative 1971 Serpentone sofa for Arflex was crafted from just one material, polyurethane foam, and sold by the meter. Her ingenious 1987 Ghost chair for Fiam was cut from a single sheet of thick glass.

But in Boeri’s earlier days, her pieces displayed a more youthful exuberance. The circa 1968 Cubotto cabinet, produced in small numbers by Arflex, is an elegantly irregular arrangement of eight drawers of varying dimensions. The wooden cube, two feet square, was finished in laminate — in vivid orange, blue, sand or white — with color-coordinated casters and handles of black-enameled brass. Its design reflects a Space Age interest in flexible, space-saving, multiuse furnishings.

“It’s a very clean piece of design,” says Kaisha Davierwalla, owner and founder of Vaspaar Italy. “Even with its strong, square lines, somehow the vibrant colors and asymmetry have the feel of a feminine touch.”

Find vintage Cini Boeri seating, lighting and tables on 1stDibs.

A Close Look at mid-century-modern Furniture

Organically shaped, clean-lined and elegantly simple are three terms that well describe vintage mid-century modern furniture. The style, which emerged primarily in the years following World War II, is characterized by pieces that were conceived and made in an energetic, optimistic spirit by creators who believed that good design was an essential part of good living.






The mid-century modern era saw leagues of postwar American architects and designers animated by new ideas and new technology. The lean, functionalist International-style architecture of Le Corbusier and Bauhaus eminences Ludwig Mies van der Rohe and Walter Gropius had been promoted in the United States during the 1930s by Philip Johnson and others. New building techniques, such as “post-and-beam” construction, allowed the International-style schemes to be realized on a small scale in open-plan houses with long walls of glass.

Materials developed for wartime use became available for domestic goods and were incorporated into mid-century modern furniture designs. Charles and Ray Eames and Eero Saarinen, who had experimented extensively with molded plywood, eagerly embraced fiberglass for pieces such as the La Chaise and the Womb chair, respectively. 

Architect, writer and designer George Nelson created with his team shades for the Bubble lamp using a new translucent polymer skin and, as design director at Herman Miller, recruited the Eameses, Alexander Girard and others for projects at the legendary Michigan furniture manufacturer

Harry Bertoia and Isamu Noguchi devised chairs and tables built of wire mesh and wire struts. Materials were repurposed too: The Danish-born designer Jens Risom created a line of chairs using surplus parachute straps for webbed seats and backrests.

The Risom lounge chair was among the first pieces of furniture commissioned and produced by legendary manufacturer Knoll, a chief influencer in the rise of modern design in the United States, thanks to the work of Florence Knoll, the pioneering architect and designer who made the firm a leader in its field. The seating that Knoll created for office spaces — as well as pieces designed by Florence initially for commercial clients — soon became desirable for the home.

As the demand for casual, uncluttered furnishings grew, more mid-century furniture designers caught the spirit.

Classically oriented creators such as Edward Wormley, house designer for Dunbar Inc., offered such pieces as the sinuous Listen to Me chaise; the British expatriate T.H. Robsjohn-Gibbings switched gears, creating items such as the tiered, biomorphic Mesa table. There were Young Turks such as Paul McCobb, who designed holistic groups of sleek, blond wood furniture, and Milo Baughman, who espoused a West Coast aesthetic in minimalist teak dining tables and lushly upholstered chairs and sofas with angular steel frames.

As the collection of vintage mid-century modern chairs, dressers, coffee tables and other furniture for the living room, dining room, bedroom and elsewhere on 1stDibs demonstrates, this period saw one of the most delightful and dramatic flowerings of creativity in design history.

Finding the Right lounge-chairs for You

While this specific seating is known to all for its comfort and familiar form, the history of how your favorite antique or vintage lounge chair came to be is slightly more ambiguous.

Although there are rare armchairs dating back as far as the 17th century, some believe that the origins of the first official “lounge chair” are tied to Hungarian modernist designer-architect Marcel Breuer. Sure, Breuer wasn’t exactly reinventing the wheel when he introduced the Wassily lounge chair in 1925, but his seat was indeed revolutionary for its integration of bent tubular steel.

Officially, a lounge chair is simply defined as a “comfortable armchair,” which allows for the shape and material of the furnishings to be extremely diverse. Whether or not chaise longues make the cut for this category is a matter of frequent debate.

The Eames lounge chair, on the other hand, has come to define somewhat of a universal perception of what a lounge chair can be. Introduced in 1956, the Eames lounger (and its partner in cozy, the ottoman) quickly became staples in television shows, prestigious office buildings and sumptuous living rooms. Venerable American mid-century modern designers Charles and Ray Eames intended for it to be the peak of luxury, which they knew meant taking furniture to the next level of style and comfort. Their chair inspired many modern interpretations of the lounge — as well as numerous copies.

On 1stDibs, find a broad range of unique lounge chairs that includes everything from antique Victorian-era seating to vintage mid-century modern lounge chairs by craftspersons such as Hans Wegner to contemporary choices from today’s innovative designers.