"My father always balanced on the rear legs of his chair," recalls Catherine Prouvé about her father Jean. "That's the way he sat to think about new inventions and design solutions," she says. "He was the only one who could stand perfectly still on only two legs." (Read more of this interview here). Just like Tom Dixon, this genius taught himself the trade. He grew up in France in a creative environment. His father belonged to an art collective: l'École de Nancy. Its main goals were to make art accessible, by combining art and industry. This is an idea that Jean would end up living by!
Prouvé realized that it were the two rear seat legs that would have to endure most of the body weight, which led to his most famous chair with a very prosaic name: the Prouvé Standard Chair. The chair was first designed in 1934, a year after Hitler came to power in Germany: can you imagine? A few years ago Dutch designer Hella Jongerius (from the famous Polder Sofa) was asked by producer Vitra to update the design a little, colour-wise. I think that was very successful: I wouldn't mind owning this one in white! :) I think the Tolvay table (that's shown below in a larger and smaller version) is very pretty as well! Because of the Second World War steel - that was generally used for table legs - was rare so Prouvé used wooden legs! :)