If you’ve ever frequented wealthy hotels or the head quarters of substantial corporations you’re sure to have come across this iconic piece of furniture – the LC2 Grand Confort Armchair.
The Le Corbusier LC2 was just one of the items that came from a short lived collaboration between Le Corbusier, Jeanneret and Perriand in the late 1920’s. The welded chrome steel frame contains five upholstered leather cushions creating an overall box shape, this is further accentuated by the cube like shape of the seat area. This cube aesthetic coupled with it’s open ‘structure on display’ design was in direct opposition to internally framed armchairs of the period, it’s said that the designers playfully referred to the chairs as “cushion baskets” because of the inside out design.
In 1929 the chair was displayed at the Salon d’Automne in Paris and later shown to the French Peugeot factory as it was a fine example of the use of tubular steel construction. The design was ‘taken up by’ the Thonet Furniture Company to produce the initial run of chairs. The chairs where originally created and manufactured especially for the Maison La Roche in Paris. Maison Le Roche was a double house designed in 1923 for Raoul La Roche and Albert Jeanneret, and marks a milestone in the architectural reflection of Le Corbusier (he was visionary architect, not solely a furniture designer).An early example of the original chair, is in the permanent collection of the Museum of Modern Art in New York City.
Grand Confort Armchair goes into production
It wasn’t until 1959 that the Grand Confort was first put into production proper by Heidi Weber of Zurich. Since 1965 Cassina of Italy became the license holder of the design and continue to produce these iconic chairs today.
Interestingly in the 1980’s a Hitachi Maxell TV commercial produced advertisements popularly known as “Blown Away Guy” for its line of audio cassettes, the imagery created by Steve Steigman (1942-2004, USA) soon became a pop art piece.
Used in the image of “the blown away guy” is none other than a LC2 Grand Confort Armchair, it’s popularity was once again revitalised and became associated by a generation with 1980’s contemporary furniture. Ironically by this time it was already 50+ years old and created by team born in around the end of the 19th not 20th Century.
All of them true visionaries…creating a true icon in furniture.
On a final note you can authenticate a chair from the official manufacturers by looking for the official stamp featuring –
- The signature of Le Corbusier
- The “Cassina I Maestri” logo
- A production number which places the chair in the chronology of production