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How High the Moon


This is one of Shiro Kuramata's representative works and one of the most important chairs in the history of design, in which the contours composed of expanded metal, a construction material, became the structure as it is. The form is that of a traditional armchair, but by using a material that had never been used for furniture before, it expresses the "lightness" and "fragility" characteristic of Kuramata. Kuramata's intention was to create a chair that has the atmosphere of a work of art, yet still has the function of a chair for sitting.


This chair was manufactured at an ironworks in Japan and installed in spaces designed by Kuramata, and was also sold by IDÉE (1986-97). Overseas, they were manufactured and sold by Vitra (1986-2009). This time, under the supervision of Kuramata Design Office, Gallery Tamura Joe has reissued the original drawings with some improvements.


Since the ironworks at the time of its release no longer exists, the ironworks, which has long been involved in Kuramata's works, such as the two-seater version of "How High the Moon," is manufacturing this piece. The brazing technique used to connect the tips of the expanded metal is a characteristic of the models made in Japan. Since the environment surrounding plating has changed, the finish is nickel satin, which is close to the specifications of the time. There are only a few factories in Japan that are capable of plating chairs of this size. The "How High the Moon" has been revived using Japanese metalworking techniques that are being lost.


Incidentally, the name of the chair, "How High the Moon," comes from the name of a standard jazz number. The Kuramata residence still has a CD of the Stanton Kenton Orchestra version with female vocals by June Christie, which Kuramata must have listened to.


The size of the vitra. version and the reprinted "How High the Moon" are different (W955 x D825 x H695 SH330mm based on blueprints) due to the different standards for expanded metal in Japan and overseas. In addition, since they are completely handmade, each is slightly different in size.

To ensure that the seat does not become concave when sitting on it, a thicker material is used for the expanded metal of the seat portion, and burrs created in the manufacturing process of the expanded metal are carefully removed with a wire brush. Skirts and stockings should not tear easily.

Dimensions: W955 x D825 x H695 / SH330mm

Country of origin: Japan

Materials: Expanded metal


Sing Sing Sing


The first chair made of expanded metal, one of Kuramata's favorite materials. The flowing S-shaped curve from the seat to the back is made of this material in a cantilever structure, and the curve of the armrests, which are integrated with the legs, is composed of four Rs. It creates an exquisite sense of tension. The name "Sing Sing Sing" comes from a jazz standard number that is easy to ride. The form of the chair likewise evokes a sense of rhythm.


The lines of the seat and armrests have been changed many times since its release, and many versions of the same "Sing Sing Sing" exist. In the early days, the seat surface was yellow. For a while, it was also manufactured by XO in France. The Gallery Tamura Joe version was produced based on the final drawings and model displayed at the retrospective exhibition at the Hara Museum of Contemporary Art. Compared to the early design, it has a more finished beauty.

Dimensions: W525 x D607 x H858 / SH440mm

Country of origin: Japan

Materials: Expanded metal


Apple Honey


This chair was designed by Tadao Ando in 1985 for Mon Petit Chou, a café-restaurant in Shimogamo, Kyoto. The tense form when viewed from the side is created by inserting a stainless steel part that integrates the armrest and backrest into the steel stool section. Craftsmen's high skill is required to finish this without damaging it. One of the characteristics of Kuramata's design is that the viewer does not feel the difficulty of this process.

Kuramata's furniture, when designed for a client's facility, is often designed with usability in mind. The "Apple Honey" has a low seat, and the reissued version has a well-cushioned seat that is set back about 2 cm from the legs, making it quite comfortable to sit on.


Kuramata had a great deal of difficulty in designing this chair and even dreamed about it, as he wrote in his book, "The Landscape of Undeveloped Images. The name of the chair comes from a standard jazz number.

Dimensions: W480 x D470 x H720 / SH420mm

Country of origin: Japan

Materials: Arm: Stainless Steel Seat: Leather Leg: Steel

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