Iconic Eames Lounge Chair Inspires Mal Outdoor Chair

October 1, 2012 by

This year marks the 100th anniversary of the birth of Ray Eames, half of the iconic husband and wife design team of Charles and Ray Eames, whose vast collection of works includes the world-renowned Eames lounge chair, below, now in the permanent collection of the Museum of Modern Art in New York. We had one in the living room in my childhood home, but my mother, who never kept anything–and I still wince at this when I think of it– years ago sold it at a garage sale.

It’s been said that Charles and Ray achieved their monumental success asking this question of each project,”Does it interest and intrigue us? Can we make it better? Will we have “serious fun” doing it?” The same seems to hold true for Eindoven-based brand, Mal, whose Mal 1956 chair, inspired by and a tribute to the famous Eames lounge chair, I spotted in London while on BlogTour last week at Design Junction in an exhibit for Covent Garden shop Do.

Mal has redesigned the Eames classic in rotational molded PE plastic, placing drainage holes to prevent water from collecting in the seat and ottoman where on the original Eames chair there were upholstery buttons–making the Mal perfect for outdoors.

According to The New York Times, the chair is called Mal as “mal” is the Dutch word for “mold,” but, with an injection of humor, it also means “silly.”

Some might indeed find it silly to attempt a reinterpretation of such an iconic piece of modern furniture, but for me, the Mal injects a bit of fun into an outdoor room with its playful range of bright colors or even in black and white.
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This is one of several upcoming posts sharing finds from my visit to London with Modenus BlogTour for the London Design Festival, and to Paris for Maison et Objet and Paris Design Week. Many thanks to BlogTour sponsors:  Citizen M hotelBlanco, DuVerre HardwareMr. Steam, And So To BedVictoria & Albert BathsLapicida,  AmticoSamuel HeathThe Architectural Digest Home Design Show, and Maggie’s Cancer CentresLearn more about BlogTour.

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  • http://www.colourliving.co.uk/blog tina

    I happened to see the orange Mal outside the Do shop in Covent Garden a few days before DesignJunction. They told me they were going to attend!

    I think it’s rather fun and playful. I can imagine that some design aesthetics would turn in their graves but hey, why not be inspired by a classic.

    Great post:))

  • http://www.figoframes.com Sharon Wong

    Ah yes, Mal as in ‘mold’ in Dutch; and your injection of humour is absolutely on target as the Mal chair is possibly Injection Molded. Isn’t that silly!

    Sharon

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