The Vegetal is an organically-shaped chair that is meant to look as if it had taken its shape naturally. With that goal in mind and inspired by small trees which American gardeners had fashioned into the shape of seating furniture, the French designers Ronan and Erwan Bouroullec set about designing the Vegetal. Designed for outdoor use, the chair had to be both water-resistant and – for practical purposes – easily stackable.
Neither the Bouroullec brothers nor Vitra could have imagined that it would take four years of intense work on both the design and the development of the chair before the ambitious project would finally be realised. The inspiration of natural vegetation is easy to see in the intricate, asymmetrical structure of the branch-like ribs that make up the Vegetal's seat shell as well as the colour scheme. Made from polyamide and manufactured using injection moulding, the chair is an exploration of the limits of its material and the latest production techniques.
- Polyamide dyed throughout in brick or cactus
- Height: 13 cm / 5 1/8 inch
- Width: 10.1 cm / 4 inch
- Depth: 9.5 cm / 3 3/4 inch
- Each miniature is packaged in a wooden box, accompanied by an informational booklet.
- 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.
Twenty years ago the Vitra Design Museum in Weil am Rhein began making miniature replicas of the great milestones in furniture design housed in its collection. A summary of the history of industrial furniture design – moving from the historic and art nouveau to the new Bauhaus’ radical design, and from postmodernism all the way up until the present day – the collection has grown to include more than 100 pieces. The chairs are all one sixth of the size of the originals. They are all true to scale and replicate the originals right down to the smallest details in construction, material and color.
Vitra Miniatures Vegetal Chair (Set of 3) Designed by:
- Ronan & Erwan Bouroullec , 2008
Ronan and Erwan Bouroullec
Ronan - France, 1971 / Erwan - France, 1976
Ronan and Erwan Bouroullec’s working collaboration is a permanent dialogue nourished by their distinct personalities and a shared notion of diligence with the intention to reach more balance and fineness.
In 1997, they presented their Disintegrated Kitchen at the Salon du Meuble in Paris and were spotted by Giulio Cappellini, who gave them their first industrial design projects, notably the Lit clos (“Closed Bed”) and the Spring Chair. A meeting with Vitra’s Rolf Fehlbaum resulted in their conception of a new kind of office system, Joyn, in 2002. This was the beginning of a special partnership that has borne fruit in numerous projects, including Algues, the Alcove Sofa, the Worknest, the Slow Chair, the Vegetal and L’Oiseau. Since 2004, the Bouroullecs have also been working with Magis, for whom they have designed two complete furniture collections, Striped and Steelwood as well as additional projects such as the Pila chair, the Pilo table, the Central and Tambour tables.
Today Ronan and Erwan Bouroullec design for numerous manufacturers, Vitra, Kvadrat, Magis, Kartell, Alessi, Mattiazzi, Flos, and more recently, Iittala.