Words Anna Bates
Konstantin Grcic has reinvented the classic plastic cantilever chair. Half of the 4mm-thin chair is made up of holes, yet the net-like structure can support a weight of 500kg without shattering.
The chair is made using a particularly strong type of PET plastic called Ultradur High Speed, which is especially runny when molten. “It injects like water rather than honey into the injection mould,” says Grcic. This enables the liquid plastic to be moulded in more intricate detail.
The Munich-based designer was asked to produce an item for chemical manufacturer BASF using the new material. “It’s chairs that write history,” says Grcic. “Not bottle openers. The cantilever chair is an icon of modern furniture, but no one has touched it since 1967. I found a niche – I wanted to design a chair that could not be made in any other material.”
Although the chair – called Myto (meaning myth) – could be seen as a technical progression of Verner Panton’s eponymous 1967 design, in form it takes inspiration from the more angular B32 Cesca chair, designed by Marcel Breuer in 1928. “You get bogged down with the nuts and bolts but in the end it all comes down to whether it’s comfortable – the person will decide that,” says Grcic.
Myto took just one year from drawing board to production line. Produced by Italian manufacturer Plank, it was presented at the K plastics fair in Düsseldorf in October.