Collection Online

Armchair 41
designed (1930); manufactured (early 1970s)

laminated Birch, painted plywood
63.7 × 61.1 × 86.6 cm
Place/s of Execution
Accession Number
International Decorative Arts
Credit Line
National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne
Purchased, 1975
Gallery location
18th Century Decorative Arts - Great Hall Costume Corridor
Level 2, NGV International
Seat - back panels united in single sheet plywood, each end attached to supporting framework.
Throughout the 1920s Aalto conducted experiments into the bending of wood and wood lamination. He is credited with adapting the lamination process for mass production and his experiments led to his revolutionary chair designs of the 1930s, including Armchair 41, designed to furnish the Paimio Sanatorium. Its design is closely allied to the cantilevered chairs of Marcel Breuer and Mies van der Rohe, although Armchair 41 is made entirely out of wood. The chair heralded a new direction in materials, plywood and laminated woods being firmly embraced by other Scandinavian designers, not to mention Charles and Ray Eames in America.
—text from Nordic Cool (Feb 2015)