Airline Deco Chairs (1935-1936)

Weber’s most famous work is probably this armchair, which exemplified the clean, streamlined style of the age, with its seat supported by a cantilevered frame reminiscent of wooden aircraft components.

INTERACTIVE VIEW (Click and Drag)


Who designed Deco Airline Chairs?

This American art deco armchair was designed in 1936 by Karl Emmanuel Martin (KEM) Weber (1889 – 1963). In 1935 Weber could not find a manufacturer for his “Airline Chair”. The several hundred he sold to Disney Studios were made by local cabinet makers. In 1936 he sold the concept (A wood chair that had no screws nails or bolts and could be shipped “flat”) to the Mueller Furniture Company of Grand Rapids, Michigan who manufactured this chair.

info source: http://www.modernismgallery.com/kem+weber/

 

Kem Weber, Airline chair, 1935- 1936
Kem Weber, Airline chair, 1935- 1936

image source: https://www.collectorsweekly.com/articles/kem-weber-the-most-important-mid-century-modern-designer-you-never-heard-of/

Kem Weber in Disney's Burbank offices
Kem Weber in Disney’s Burbank offices

image source: https://creativefuel.frch.com/2015/10/08/kem-weber-chair-build/

Kem Weber designed Disney's Burbank offices in the late 1930s
Kem Weber designed Disney’s Burbank offices in the late 1930s

image source: http://www.paulfrasercollectibles.com/news/movie-memorabilia/disney-animators-office-furniture-valued-at-80-000/21196.page

Although it was practical, stylish and economical to construct and ship, the Airline chair failed to find a volume manufacturer, and most surviving examples come from the batch of 300 made for the Walt Disney Studios, largely by craftsmen rather than machines.

info source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kem_Weber

Kem Weber’s Airline Chair was designed to be packed in a cardboard container and assembled by the customer.
Kem Weber’s Airline Chair was designed to be packed in a cardboard container and assembled by the customer.

image source: https://www.collectorsweekly.com/articles/kem-weber-the-most-important-mid-century-modern-designer-you-never-heard-of/

What are its dimensions?

  • H. 31-1/2,
  • W. 24-3/4,
  • D. 33 in.

(80 x 62.9 x 83.8 cm)

info source: https://www.metmuseum.org/art/collection/search/490910

Kem Weber, Airline chair, 1935- 1936
Kem Weber, Airline chair, 1935- 1936

image source: http://www.modernismgallery.com/kem+weber/

image source: http://www.icollector.com/K-E-M-Weber-Airline-chair_i7292753