Skip to main content

Percival Lafer

Brazilian, b. 1936

When it comes to mid-century furniture, the innovative work of the Brazilian Modernists has often been overlooked, including the designs of prolific maker Percival Lafer. Lafer studied architecture at São Paulo’s Universidade Mackenzie. After he graduated, his father passed away suddenly, leaving a furniture business that Lafer took over with his brothers.

Taking up the mantle, Lafer made the jump from architecture to furniture design in 1961, putting a focus on thoughtfully designed pieces available at affordable prices. That year, he introduced his supremely popular MP-1 chair, a plush piece of furniture made with iron and wood that he has riffed on throughout his entire career. The silhouettes of his lounge chairs, armchairs and other seating were distinct from streamlined American and European mid-century modernism, taking on casual, puffed forms thanks to his use of polyurethane layers as padding. He combined such contemporary industrial materials with local natural ones, namely Brazilian hardwoods, which delighted customers around the world as Lafer became one of the country’s leading exporters of furniture.

Lafer has continued to design furniture throughout his career, branching into sofas, tables and lighting. He was at the forefront of mechanical furniture movements, debuting the MP-7 sofa, which could turn into a twin bed, in 1965, the first such piece on the market. One of his most intriguing projects was the MP Lafer, a two-seat fiberglass roadster designed to emulate British sports cars. Some 4,300 units were produced over its 16-year manufacturing run in the ’70s and ’80s, with several ending up in the collections of major car museums.

Still, Lafer’s biggest claim to fame is his seating, which he continues to design, drawing inspiration from modern shapes and local materials. In 2017, a retrospective of his work was organized as part of the São Paulo Design Weekend.

Find a collection of authentic Percival Lafer furniture on 1stDibs.

Percival Lafer Voluptuous Ottoman in Green Leather
By Percival Lafer
Located in Waalwijk, NL
Percival Lafer, ottoman, brazilian hardwood, leather, Brazil, 1970s Bulky and voluptuous pouf made in the 1970s by Percival Lafer. The green leather of the seat is tufted, which con...
Category

1970s European Mid-Century Modern Vintage Percival Lafer

Materials

Leather, Wood

  • Percival Lafer Voluptuous Ottoman in Green Leather
  • Percival Lafer Voluptuous Ottoman in Green Leather
  • Percival Lafer Voluptuous Ottoman in Green Leather
  • Percival Lafer Voluptuous Ottoman in Green Leather
H 16.15 in. W 23.23 in. D 23.23 in.
Midcentury Brazilian Ottoman in Brown Leather and Rosewood by Percival Lafer
By Percival Lafer
Located in Karlstad, SE
Ottoman / stool by Percival Lafer, Brazil, 1960s. This ottoman consist of a rosewood frame upon which the cushion rests. The cushions are upholstered in brown leather with rosewood ...
Category

20th Century Brazilian Mid-Century Modern Percival Lafer

Materials

Leather, Wood, Rosewood

Pair of "MP-05" Armchair by Percival Lafer, Brazilian Mid-Century Modern
By Percival Lafer
Located in Sao Paulo, SP
Designed as a variation on the MP-3 armchair, the rare MP-5 armchair demonstrates Lafer's passion for mechanisms and solutions, often capable of bringing simple and elegant lines to ...
Category

Mid-20th Century Brazilian Mid-Century Modern Percival Lafer

Materials

Wood

Brazilian Sofa, 1960's
By Percival Lafer
Located in Brussels, BE
Percival Lafer Mid-Century Modern sofa made of Brazilian rosewood and still with the original faux leather upholstery. Seating height is 41 cm.
Category

Mid-20th Century Brazilian Mid-Century Modern Percival Lafer

Materials

Chrome

  • Brazilian Sofa, 1960's
  • Brazilian Sofa, 1960's
  • Brazilian Sofa, 1960's
  • Brazilian Sofa, 1960's
H 27.56 in. W 86.23 in. D 31.5 in.
Percival Lafer 'S-1' Rosewood and Leather Living Room Set, Brazil, 1976, Signed
By Percival Lafer
Located in Los Angeles, CA
This gorgeous restored 'S-1' living room set comprised of a pair of cognac leather lounge chairs and a three-seat sofa by Brazilian designer Percival Lafer for Lafer MP. This set wa...
Category

1970s Brazilian Mid-Century Modern Vintage Percival Lafer

Materials

Leather, Rosewood

Percival Lafer Brazilian Modernist Rosewood Chair Model MP-013
By Percival Lafer
Located in Los Angeles, CA
Brazilian modernist chair Model MP-103, designed by Percival Lafer in 1960. The 103 is Lafer’s first chair design. This piece features a stunning Brazilian rosewood structure with ch...
Category

1960s Brazilian Modern Vintage Percival Lafer

Materials

Leather

Percival Lafer 'MP-13' Rosewood and Leather Four-Seat Sofa, Brazil, c. 1967
By Percival Lafer
Located in Los Angeles, CA
This gorgeous MP-13 four-seat sofa by Brazilian designer Percival Lafer for Lafer MP was designed in 1967, this example an early production made for Brazil and recently imported to t...
Category

1960s Brazilian Mid-Century Modern Vintage Percival Lafer

Materials

Chrome

Armchair MP-13 by Percival Lafer, Brazilian Design
By Percival Lafer
Located in Sao Paulo, SP
We work with artisans who masterfully restore typical pieces from each period of our history, valuing their different preservation techniques. Teamwork has built this pioneering comp...
Category

Mid-20th Century Brazilian Mid-Century Modern Percival Lafer

Materials

Other

Browse all Furniture from Percival Lafer
Shop Now

Percival Lafer Sellers

Creators Similar to Percival Lafer

Percival Lafer furniture for sale on 1stDibs

Percival Lafer's furniture is available for sale on 1stDibs. These distinctive objects are often made of wood and designed with extraordinary care. In our Percival Lafer collection, there are many options to choose from, although brown editions of this piece are particularly popular. 96 vintage editions of these items are in stock, while there is also 1 modern edition to choose from. During the 20th century, many of the original furniture by Percival Lafer were created in the mid-century modern style in South America. If you are looking for additional options, many customers also consider furniture by José Zanine Caldas, Oscar Niemeyer and Sergio Rodrigues. Prices for Percival Lafer furniture can vary depending on size, time period and other attributes. Price for these items starts at $625 and tops out at $40,250, while pieces like these can sell for $4,995.
Questions About Percival Lafer
  • 1stDibs ExpertApril 5, 2022
    Percival Lafer is a leading contemporary Brazilian furniture designer most famous for his Mid-Century Modern sofas and chairs constructed with hardwood and luxurious leather. Lafer is a pioneer of the Brazilian Modernist movement. On 1stDibs, find authentic Percival Lafer furniture from top sellers.

Recently Viewed

View More