Nouvelles Vagues: 60 ways of sitting down from the archives of Centre Pompidou

60 seats including armchairs, inflatables and chaise lounges tell the revolution of postures which took place between the 20s and 70s.

Set up by India Mahdavi in the rooms of the Cercle naval in Toulon, the exhibition “Nouvelles Vagues” traces the evolution of postures from Modernism to Pop Art, with about 60 examples from the archives of the Centre Pompidou. The set design decrees the spirit of the exhibition: light and pop, with Daniel Buren-style coloured patterns.

Starting with a group of chaise longues that are real design milestones – like the chaise longue B 306 by Le CorbusierPierre Jeannaret and Charlotte Perriand (1928-1932), Alvar Aalto’s N°39 in bent glulam produced in 1936, or Franco Albini’s rocking chair from 1940 – the exhibition moves on to Les pop. Here we have those seats that have changed the way we sit down with unusual materials and bold shapes. We can find the colourful icons of the Sixties signed by masters such as Joe Colombo with his 4801 chair for Kartell (1963) and the Tubo chair (1969) for ABS, Olivier Mourgue with his series of armchairs for Airborne (1965) or Pierre Paulin and his unmistakable ‘tongue’, the Siège 577 (1967).

The exhibition ends with a series of inflatable seats, which appeared for the first time in the 60s and 70s, linked to a utopian vision of living where changin attitudes become manifest in the way we lie in space. The pioneer of this style was Nguyen Manh Khan’n, known as Quasar, with his Aerospace series presented at the Milan Triennale in 1968/1969. Inaugurated during Design Parade Toulon, the exhibition will remain open until November 24, 2019.

Nouvelles Vagues
Set design:
India Mahdavi
Centre Pompidou
Cercle naval, 26 avenue Jean Moulin, Toulon
Opening dates:
until 24 November 2019

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