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Panton Chair
Iconic Designs

Panton Chair

About the Design

Appearing as if it were a three-dimensional brushstroke of paint, the S-shaped Panton chair is just one curved piece of plastic that cantilevers over itself to form a seat. Prior to its development by experimental Danish designer Verner Panton (1926–98), no chair had ever been crafted from a single piece of molded plastic. 

“I want to design furniture that grows up out of the floor,” Panton said of his work. “To turn the furniture into something organic, which never has four legs.” The designer, who studied at the Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts in Copenhagen before working for Arne Jacobsen’s architecture firm, started experimenting with the concept of single-piece plastic chairs in the late 1950s, drafting sketches of what eventually became his signature eponymous work before creating a full-scale polystyrene model. But he ran into production trouble — no manufacturer would tackle the chair’s challenging engineering problems. Plastic was still a relatively new invention at the time, having been introduced to mass markets in the postwar era when most furniture makers still preferred to work in wood.

Enter Swiss furniture company Vitra, which agreed to take on the project in 1963. It took four years — and ten prototypes — but Vitra and Panton were ultimately successful, creating a Panton chair made from fiberglass-reinforced polyester. It debuted in Danish design magazine Mobilia in 1967 and then at the 1968 Cologne Furniture Fair. The chair embodied a seductive combination of the era’s popular Space Age and Pop Art aesthetics through its undulating form, futuristic material and punchy colors, resulting in mass demand for the relatively affordable piece of furniture. While it was discontinued in 1979 due to durability issues, the chair was reintroduced years later and Vitra has continued to manufacture it, experimenting with materials ranging from polyurethane foam to polypropylene in conjunction with Panton throughout the course of his lifetime. For the chair’s 50th anniversary, Vitra produced limited-edition chrome and glow-in-the-dark models.

The chair has become a celebrity in itself: It was featured on the cover of British Vogue in 1995 — with a nude Kate Moss atop it — and in 2006, it was inducted into the Danish Culture Canon. Numerous design museums hold the chair in their collections, including the Museum of Modern Art in New York, the Design Museum in London and more. As far as chairs go, particularly those designed during the 1960s and 1970s, there are few better known and more beloved than the Panton.

Panton Chair

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Vintage Scandinavian Verner Panton “checkers Ii” Textile. 3 ft 10 in x 3 ft 10in
By Verner Panton
Located in New York, NY
Vintage Scandinavian Verner Panton “checkers Ii” Textile, Country of Origin: Scandinavia, Circa date: Mid-20th Century. Size: 3 ft 10 in x 3 ft 10 in (1.17 m x 1.17 m)
Category

20th Century Scandinavian Mid-Century Modern Russian and Scandinavian Rugs

Materials

Linen

Mid-Century Modern Verner Panton Cream Dining Set or Card Table by Herman Miller
By Verner Panton, Herman Miller
Located in Philadelphia, PA
A very early complete dining set designed by Verner Panton and Produced by Herman Miller and Vitra. A nice early example in off-white dyed polystyrene. Complete set sold as shown, fo...
Category

Vintage 1970s American Mid-Century Modern Dining Room Sets

Materials

Glass, Polystyrene

Up To Six White Verner Panton Classic Pop Art Cantilever Chairs, Germany, 1980s
By Verner Panton, WK Wohnen
Located in Vienna, AT
Up to six beautiful white S-shaped stackable cantilever chairs, designed by Verner Panton in 1955. These are the sought-after „Classic“ chairs, executed from 1983 to 1990 by WK Wohne...
Category

Mid-20th Century German Chairs

Materials

Plastic, Foam

Panton Chairs Classic
By Vitra, Verner Panton
Located in Denver, CO
Set of six Classic Panton chairs In the early 1960s, the Danish designer Verner Panton together with the Vitra Development Team, realized an idea which had preoccupied him for ma...
Category

Vintage 1960s European Chairs

Materials

Plastic

Supreme x Vitra Panton Mid-Century Modern "S Chair" in Glossy Red with Logo
By Verner Panton, Supreme, Vitra
Located in Englewood, NJ
A collaboration between supreme x Vitra Panton for Supreme's Spring Season 21' of the iconic "S Chair" designed by famed Danish designer Verner Panton which dates back to 1959 when i...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Swiss Modern Side Chairs

Materials

Acrylic

Verner Panton for Vitra Glow Panton Chair, Luminescent, White, Blue, Limited Ed.
By Vitra, Verner Panton
Located in Brooklyn, NY
Verner Panton for Vitra Glow Panton chair, Luminescent, white, blue, limited edition After several years of joint development by Verner Panton and Vitra, the Panton chair was finally...
Category

Mid-20th Century European Mid-Century Modern Dining Room Chairs

Materials

Plastic

Verner Panton "Panton Chair" 6 Original Chairs Edition Herman Miller circa 1960
By Herman Miller, Verner Panton
Located in Saint-Ouen, FR
Verner Panton "Panton chair" 6 original chairs edition Herman Miller in enamelled fiberglass circa 1960 released a few years ago. original color: white wear and minor losses.
Category

Vintage 1960s North American Mid-Century Modern Chairs

Materials

Fiberglass

White Panton Chair by Verner Panton for Vitra with Side Stool
By Verner Panton, Vitra
Located in Pasadena, TX
White Panton chair by Verner Panton for Vitra with Side Stool Captivated by the potential of plastic, Danish designer Verner Panton created the first single-form injection-molded ...
Category

Late 20th Century European Mid-Century Modern Side Chairs

Materials

Plastic

Vintage Kurve Verner Panton Textile. 4 ft 1 in x 8 ft 6 in
By Verner Panton
Located in New York, NY
Category

Mid-20th Century Danish Mid-Century Modern

Materials

Linen

Panton Chair
By Verner Panton
Located in Highland, IN
The Panton chair is an important icon of modern design and has a fascinating history as Verner Panton experimented with a variety of materials to best realize the design. The most co...
Category

Late 20th Century German Mid-Century Modern Chairs

Materials

Foam, Paint

Verner Panton "Panton Chair" Original Edition Herman Miller circa 1960
By Verner Panton, Herman Miller
Located in Saint-Ouen, FR
Verner Panton "Panton chair" original edition Herman Miller in enamelled fiberglass circa 1960 wear and minor losses.
Category

Vintage 1960s North American Mid-Century Modern Chairs

Materials

Fiberglass

Verner Panton Space Age Iconic Deutsch White Abs Chair for Vitra
By Vitra, Verner Panton
Located in Aci Castello, IT
A 2001 Verner Panton abs chair by Vitra in perfect conditions, probably never used.
Category

Early 2000s German Space Age Chairs

Materials

Plastic

White Panton Chair by Verner Panton for Vitra
By Verner Panton
Located in Boston, MA
Captivated by the potential of plastic, Danish designer Verner Panton created the first single-form injection-molded chair, which was originally manufactured by Vitra for Herman Mill...
Category

1990s Space Age Side Chairs

Materials

Plastic

Set of Four Chairs Designed by Verner Panton for Herman Miller, USA, 1960s
By Verner Panton
Located in Stockholm, SE
Pair of chairs designed by Verner Panton for Herman Miller, USA, 1960s. ABS plastic. Sold as a set. Measures: H 83cm/ 32 1/2" W 49cm/ 19 1/4" D 50cm/ 19 1/4" 32.68 in. H x ...
Category

Vintage 1960s American Mid-Century Modern Chairs

Materials

Plastic

Set of Four Chairs, Designed by Verner Panton for Herman Miller, Usa, 1960s
By Verner Panton
Located in Stockholm, SE
Set of four chairs. Sold as a set.     
Category

Vintage 1960s Central American Mid-Century Modern Chairs

Materials

Plastic

Vintage Tan Kreis Spectrum Verner Panton Textile. Size: 4 ft 1 in x 12 ft 7 in
By Verner Panton
Located in New York, NY
Category

Mid-20th Century Danish Mid-Century Modern

Materials

Linen

White Molded Plastic 'S' Chairs by Verner Panton for Vitra
By Vitra, Verner Panton
Located in Buffalo, NY
A iconic pure white stacking chair by influential Danish architect and designer Verner Panton (1926-1998). Designed in 1958, this cantilevered, stackable chair is the first single-fo...
Category

Vintage 1980s American Mid-Century Modern Dining Room Chairs

Materials

Plastic

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