Today we highlight three pieces of 1980s furniture with design origins in the 1920s. It’s not at all surprising that the ’80s embraced modern pieces from the ’20s. After all, an Art Deco revival occurred during the 1980s and poured over into many realms, including interior design and graphic design. While Mirror80 often celebrates signature ’80s design elements, today we enjoy three furnishings with timeless appeal. In fact, these pieces are still selling strong…
The Wassily Chair
Let’s start with the Wassily Chair, constructed of leather and chromium-plated steel, and shown in the image above (left). This piece was designed by Marcel Breuer in 1925 and inspired by a bicycle frame! Breuer had been a student of Germany’s famous Bauhaus art and design school, but had returned as head of the Bauhaus carpentry workshop in Dessau. It was during this time that he created the Wassily chair, named for his Russian friend and colleague Vasily (“Wassily”) Kandinsky. The chair above is for sale through a variety of online vendors, including classicdesign.it. You’d be hard-pressed to find an ’80s design book without images of this piece in starkly modern spaces.
The Cesca Chair
The chair on the right (above) is also designed by Marcel Breuer, and boy did he enjoy naming his pieces after those he adored! The Cesca Chair got its title from Breuer’s daughter Cheska. Combining materials both traditional and new, it represented the perfect melding of cane and chromium-plated tubular steel. Designed in 1928, the original model was armless. Set and interior designers of the 1980s utilized this piece’s ability to blend the old and the new. Warm yet modern, it was the perfect addition to an eclectic room. The fun lives on–this chair can be found online through vendors like classicdesign.it.
The Eileen Gray Table
For our last piece, we’ve got to give Target a little credit. First they begin selling an ’80s-fabulous mirrored cube, and now this? It’s the Eileen Gray Table, originally designed in 1927. Eileen Gray was an Irish architect and designer, and at times she created furnishings for the interiors of the houses she designed.
Also known as the E1027 Side Table (and originally designed for the E1027 house she built), this piece is modern and sleek, and it served as the perfect accompaniment to Deco-style rooms throughout the 1980s. Through the magic of reproduction, we can continue to enjoy it today, and it’s also on display at the MoMA in New York as part of the museum’s permanent collection. Chrome and glass have never looked better…
Thanks for joining us as we took a look back at some iconic 1920s furniture that experienced a revival in the ’80s. These pieces continue to be timeless gems in our design library. After all, a classic never dies.