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Pair of Early 1st Edition P40 Chairs, Osvaldo Borsani, Tecno Italy 1956 Restored

$18,000per set

About

The December 1956 issue of the Italian design journal declared Osvaldo Borsani's new 'P40' variable tilt armchairs "un magnifico regalo per Natale", (a magnificent present for christmas), please see image 8, so here they are for you just in time ! Stunning pair of very early first edition Osvaldo Borsani 'P40' variable tilt armchairs with foldaway foot rests which have had their upholstery fully restored inhouse, both chairs have been stripped bare to their bare frames before installing new high quality seat support webbing by the original manufacture 'Pirelli' throughout, new foam and beautiful new, soft wool blend, velvet fabric which really sets off the form and the detailing. These sought after, very early examples are identified by the following details: 1) the round tubular section legs , (square section legs were introduced in 1960 as documented in the October 1960 issue of Rivista Dell 'Arredamento which illustrates a Tecno advert promoting the new C series 'P40' with both extendable headrest and square section legs replacing the original round tubular legs. Please see image 17. 2) the single element combined seat and backrest before the headrest was redesigned in 1960 to be separate from the seat and extendable. Please see image 3 taken from Bosoni's history on tthe company 'Tecno' and original advert from the October 1960 issue of 'Rivista dell Arredamento' promoting the new C series P40 with separate extendable headrest, note also the square section legs already replacing the original round tube legs. Please see Image 17. 3) the original early brass "two dot" fastenings which were later replaced with fastenings with a less elegant 'philips' cross head screw, (Please refer to image 5) The December 1956 issue (number 24) of the Italian design journal 'Rivista dell Arredamento' , which we have in our library, featured a pair of very early 1956 examples of the 'P40' armchairs on its cover page, this is one of the very earliest published references for the design. Please see image 2. The P40 is described as an "armchair with two elements (seat and back) whose inclination can be adjusted independently of one another. The 'P40' has become the ideological manifestp of Borsani's 'Tecno' program and still remains one of the most recognized and acclaimed pieces of Mid-Century Modern design. An absolute design Classic. We have left the original black enamel untouched to maintain some visual signs of age and vintage authenticity to these fine historic examples. Please examine the photos closely, the brass hardware is beautifully detailed. We have kept a full photographic record of the restoration process, please refer to images 18-19 for a hint of the work involved in getting these chairs back to their former glory. Following the success of Borsani's 'D40' sofa at the 10th 'Triennale' exhibition in Milan in 1954 , Borsani quickly went to work on designing a mechanical joint with the goal of creating an armchair which could be adjusted through a range of different positions from arm chair to chaise longue and all positions in between, The 'P40' was presented in an article in the italian design journal 'Domus' in 1957 titled 'a new armchair' which pointed out that while an easy chair takes up a lot of space and serves a sole purpose this armchair occupies a normal amount of space while also offering all the reclining positions of a chaise longue via a very easily operated tilt mechanism. The 'P40' was constructed from die cast sheet metal with ribbing to stiffen the structure resulting in a very strong structure that was also lightweight, comfort as well as form is afforded by the foam padding supported on elastic webbing and spiral springs . The patent for this design was issued in May 1956. Interestingly it is possible to connect together any number of 'P40' armchairs by removing the relevant armrests and inserting a special coupling. A rare opportunity to acquire a matching pair of restored and desirable early examples of an iconic midcentury classis which is still practical today.

Details

  • Creator
    Osvaldo Borsani (Designer),Tecno (Manufacturer)
  • Design
  • Dimensions
    Height: 36.62 in. (93 cm)Width: 28.35 in. (72 cm)Depth: 31.89 in. (81 cm)Seat Height: 17.33 in. (44 cm)
  • Sold As
    Set of 2
  • Style
    Mid-Century Modern (Of the Period)
  • Materials and Techniques
  • Place of Origin
  • Period
  • Date of Manufacture
    1956-1959
  • Condition
    Rewoven. Reupholstered. Replacements made: - New rubber feet have been moulded according to the original - A few small brass mounting parts have been refabricated by a specialised restorer (jewellery maker) according to the original. Wear consistent with age and use. A full restoration has been executed with new Pirelli rubber strapping, new foam and new velvet upholstery.
  • Seller Location
    bergen op zoom, NL
  • Reference Number
    1stDibs: LU930121588552

Shipping & Returns

  • Shipping
    Rates vary by destination and complexity.
    Customs Duties & Taxes May Apply.
    Ships From: bergen op zoom, Netherlands
  • Return Policy

    A return for this item may be initiated within 7 days of delivery.

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About Osvaldo Borsani (Designer)

With his stylish and technically innovative furniture, Osvaldo Borsani helped change the face of Italian design in the 1950s and ’60s. His sofas and chairs, featuring deeply upholstered seating and adjustable position settings, have an aura of optimism and efficiency that still seems fresh and lively today.


Born in the commune of Varedo in northern Italy’s Lombardy region, Borsani studied at the Brera Academy in Milan — the same school attended by such luminaries as designer Piero Fornasetti and artist Lucio Fontana — as well as the Polytechnic University of Milan. Borsani first worked for his father’s furniture-making firm, an atelier influenced by the more expressive and curvaceous wing of Art Deco design. By 1953, when, along with his twin brother, Fulgenzio — the pair also created this visionary mid-century villa — Borsani opened the furniture company Tecno, his design sensibilities had evolved toward furnishings with strong, simple forms enhanced by mechanical innovations, as with the P40 adjustable armchair (1953). Borsani would be the firm’s lead designer for 30 years, while fostering work by Vico Magistretti, Carlo di Carli, Robin Day and others.


Similar to Giò Ponti in the earliest years of his career, Borsani first created designs marked by lush and buoyant lines: tables with voluptuous curved legs, sofas with undulating backrests. But Borsani’s best-known and most novel pieces date from Tecno’s initial furniture lines: the adjustable D70 sofa, which folds open to make a daybed, and the P40 recliner. The latter — now included in the collections of the Museum of Modern Art and the Victoria & Albert Museum — is an articulated lounger with a back, seat and leg rest that can be moved into 486 different positions. Not only is it extremely comfortable, it is also enduringly chic.


About the Seller
4.8 / 5
Located in bergen op zoom, Netherlands
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Established in 1999
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