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Miniature Tom Vac Chair

by Ron Arad from Vitra.

miniature tom vac chair

Design Ron Arad, 1999
1/6 miniature scale model
Made in Poland by Vitra

For over two decades, the Vitra Design Museum has been making miniature replicas of milestones in furniture design. The Miniatures Collection encapsulates the entire history of industrial furniture design - moving from Historicism and Art Nouveau to the New Objectivity of Bauhaus and Radical Design, and from Postmodernism all the way up to the present day. Exactly one sixth of the size of the historical originals, the chairs are all true to scale and precisely recreate the smallest details of construction, material and color. The high standard of authenticity even extends to the natural grain of the wood, the reproduction of screws and the elaborate handicraft techniques involved. This has made the miniatures into popular collector's items as well as ideal illustrative material for universities, design schools and architects.

The Tom Vac Chair was first realized as one element in a sculpture consisting of 70 stacking chairs named "Totem". Commissioned by the magazine Domus, it was set up in the center of Milan during the Salone del Mobile in 1997.

The seat shell with the characteristic wave profile is based on earlier versions Ron Arad sketched for the dining room of a house in Tel Aviv. The first small series for Totem was created in just four months. Though it is a complicated metal to manufacture, vacuum-formed aluminum proved to be a suitable material.

In collaboration with furniture maker Vitra, for whom he had already produced the Well Tempered Chair back in 1986, Ron Arad developed, within a very short time, a version of the Tom Vac Chair suitable for mass production. Seen within the context of Arad's complete work, which is largely characterized by one-offs, the chair is something of an innovation by virtue of its industrial and by extension inexpensive production. While the design of the Tom Vac Chair only deviates minimally from the first plan, the flexible seat shell of polypropylene offers a high degree of comfort.

Each Vitra miniature is true to the original in construction and materials, and reduced in size on a scale of 1:6. Each miniature is packaged in a wooden box, accompanied by an informational booklet. Production notes: Each of the delicate objects are made by hand; on average, each miniature requires five hours of careful manual work. Ongoing quality control ensures that every miniature corresponds to its larger original in terms of finishing, details and materials.

5.1" h | 4.1" w | 3.9" d

$325.00 + free shipping
(usually ships in 18-20 weeks)
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Ron Arad

In 1981 Ron scoured a scrapyard and combined a car seat with structural tubing to create the postmodern Rover Chair, whose popularity significantly launched his career. Ron Arad’s unique design style would continue to use unorthodox combinations of materials and concepts.
Vitra is a Swiss company dedicated to improving the quality of space through the power of design. A central goal of Vitra is sustainable development. Trendy styling is avoided in favor of classic pieces that can be used for decades.

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