International Decorative Art

Tulip Armchair (Model 150)

Tulip Armchair (Model 150)

Design Date 1956

Designer Eero Saarinen (1910-1961, American, b. Finland)

Manufacturer Knoll International (1938-present), New York, NY

Media fiberglass, aluminum and cloth upholstery

Dimensions 31 3/4 x 25 3/4 x 23 3/4 inches

The Tulip armchair was part of the last furniture series designed by architect Eero Saarinen. The entire series of chairs and tables were supported on a stem-like pedestal. Saarinen said that “the undercarriage of chairs and tables in a typical interior makes an ugly, confusing, unrestful world. I wanted to clear up the slum of legs. I wanted to make the chair all one thing again.” Saarinen hoped to build the chair out of a single continuous piece of plastic, but structural engineers believed a plastic base would not support enough weight, so he was forced to construct the base out of aluminum painted to match the plastic. Saarinen said, “I look forward to the day when the plastic industry has advanced to the point where the chair will be one material, as designed.”

ON VIEW in Modern Gallery 7

Markings unmarked

Credit Line Collection Kirkland Museum of Fine & Decorative Art

Accession Number 2004.1994