7 cool architects


In a collaboration with seven cool architects, Fritz Hansen presents a unique homage to the iconic Series 7™ chair, which turns 60 years in 2015. On 16 July 2015, a special exhibition opens at Design museum Gent in Belgium. In the exhibition, Fritz Hansen has invited seven cool architects to offer their personal take on the iconic Series 7 chair. The seven architects are Bjarke Ingels Group, Carlos Ott & Carlos Ponce de León, Jean Nouvel Design, Jun Igarashi, Neri & Hu, Snøhetta and Zaha Hadid Design. After the world premiere at Design museum Gent, the exhibition goes on tour, with Oslo as the next stop.

Unlike most of Arne Jacobsen’s chair designs, Series 7™ was not created for a specific context, in contrast to the Ant, for example, which was custom-made for the canteen at Novo Nordisk or the Oxford chair, which he designed for St. Catherine’s College in Oxford. This gives the Series 7™ a universal quality that is open to interpretation and to blending into very different contexts, as demonstrated in the exhibition ‘7 cool architects’. In this exhibition, seven brilliant architects from around the world offer their interpretation of the Series 7 chair, seen through the prism of their own cultural background and their personal concept of architecture.

‘Sixty years ago, Arne Jacobsen designed the Series 7™ chair. This year Jean Nouvel, BIG, Zaha Hadid, Snøhetta and Neri & Hu are among the seven architects who have accepted the invitation to interpret the chair. The results once again prove the contemporary strengths of genuine timeless design and shows that this chair is still relevant today,’ says Jacob Holm, CEO, Fritz Hansen.
Zaha Hadid’s special edition formalizes the Series 7 chair as a dynamic and seamless expression of structure and support. Formed from two continuous steel rods, the sculptural base sweeps down to the ground and reaches up to embrace the undulating shape of the iconic plywood seat.

‘The Seven chair has a timeless and distinctive silhouette, which has proven versatile in the number of ways its base can be modified. ZHD wanted to address this relationship by designing a base which cradles the shell in a way where the base and the shell are elegantly interrelated and integrated,’ says Zaha Hadid, CEO, Zaha Hadid Design.

BIG’s contribution to the exhibition is inspired by the material properties of the chair: The essence of the layered veneer and the functionality of stacking. ‘The final result is a subtle repetition of the iconic idiom, says Bjarke Ingels, Founding Partner, BIG.