Clear, almost austere in its geometry – casual in its effect. Swiss designer Ginger Zalaba has made Aisuu Side Chair something of a tribute. A tribute to Otto Kolb, her grandfather and a master of the New Bauhaus, who designed avant-garde furniture in the Chicago of the 1950s.
With its wing-like armrests, it was ahead of its time. The American Playboy editors were certainly enthusiastic. They called it the “Love Chair”. Walter Knoll found it good from the outset. In 1961, we created an upholstered version of it. And today we are more than pleased that his granddaughter, herself an artist, has reinterpreted the original design.
Ginger Zalaba grew up among the furniture of Otto Kolb. She has been fascinated by her grandfather’s work and the Bauhaus from an early age. She asked herself how she could translate his most important piece of furniture into the present day. She gave it her own language, her own sense of lifestyle: a love of lines, material, reduction. Aisuu Side Chair is a soloist. Exceptional, cool, irresistible.
With Aisuu Side Chair, designer Ginger Zalaba has brought her grandfather’s “bat chair” into the present
The design story
Otto Kolb, a Swiss architect and designer, lived and worked together with Le Corbusier, Johannes Itten, Max Bill and Hans Arp. On the recommendation of the pioneers of modernity, he went to Chicago, to the New Bauhaus, where he designed the “bat chair” in 1951. Playboy rechristened it the “Love Chair”. Shortly afterwards, Walter Knoll created an eye-catching upholstered version of the chair. But, at the time, it seemed too avant-garde.
Otto Kolb’s granddaughter, the designer Ginger Zalaba, found her grandfather’s sketches a few years ago and was particularly fascinated with the bat chair. She presented a draft of her grandfather’s inspired prototype in Herrenberg. The Walter Knoll team was immediately taken by the reduction of the elegant material, the unusual supporting construction and outstanding finishing. With their extensive experience, the developers tweaked a few things here and there, optimized the ergonomics and the inclination of seat and backrest, as well as the tube wall thickness and the finishing of the leather. The result: recognition of a master of the New Bauhaus, modernized with true designer grit, refined with premium craftsmanship.
Aisuu Side Chair comes in a bronze finished framework (left) or in black; the elegant saddle leather is available in a wide range of colors. Learn more here
Facts and details
Striking, three millimeter thick, saddle leather
Leather edges rounded off, polished and dyed to suit the cover by hand
Framework matt powder coated in black or bronze
“We conceal the leather seams in a fine channel – for a wonderfully smooth surface.”
— Oliver Siegelin, Team Lead Development at Walter Knoll