Roman Modzelewski and the Iconic RM58 Chair
Roman Modzelewski (1912-1997) was an Eastern European Design Icon, known for his prowess as a painter, designer, sculptor, and teacher. His contributions to the world of art and design, particularly in furniture design, are lasting and innovative. Modselewski was born in Lozdzieje, Lithuania, and later resided in Łodz, Poland. His creative journey was marked by avant-garde concepts, interdisciplinary approaches, and his pioneering application of polyester glass laminate furniture.
Early Life and Academic Pursuits
Roman Modzelewski embarked on his artistic journey by graduating from the esteemed Academy of Fine Arts in Warsaw. His career flourished in parallel with the Łodz Academy of Fine Arts. There he was a professor and Rector since its inception in 1945.
Artistic Evolution and Style
Initially influenced by impressionism, Roman Modzelewski experienced a transformative evolution in his artistic style. He delved into experimentation with form, color, and eventually gravitated towards “solarism” and cubism. The language of abstraction, geometric forms, symbolic use of color, and textured significance became prominent features of his paintings.
Innovations in Furniture Design
Modzelewski’s foray into furniture design began with remarkable contributions, such as an upholstered armchair and a plywood chair showcased at the Second All-Poland Exhibition of Interior Design in Warsaw (1957). These designs were lauded for their innovation in form and use of contemporary materials. Yet, arguably his most innovative design was his comfortable lounge chair, which was one of the earliest examples of furniture of fiberglass and synthetic colored resin in 1958, also known as the RM 58.
The RM58 Chair
The RM58 was a pioneering piece of furniture in Poland that also captured global interest. Handmade in 1958, it was one of the earliest European examples of polyester-glass laminate furniture. The fully closed organic form of the seat had no counterpart in this time, either in Poland or elsewhere. The use of new materials and industrial technologies in the production of the RM58 chair made a consistently high quality product that guarantees extended longevity. It also made it possible to create a matte version of the chair, providing new aesthetic appeal and a variety of new modern colors.
One of the earliest surviving prototypes (in white) was purchased for the permanent design collection of the Victoria and Albert Museum, London. The armchair was presented by V&A at its exhibition “Cold War Modern: Design 1945-1970” devoted to modern design, architecture, film and pop culture created during the Cold War on both sides of the Iron Curtain. The armchair was also among the items at the exhibition “We Want to Be Modern” at the National Museum in Warsaw. Two original RM58 armchairs are also part of the permanent collection of the Modern Design Centre of the National Museum in Warsaw.
After more than half a century since its creation, Polish furniture designer, Vzór created the modern version of the RM58 matte, soft and classic chair by Roman Modzelewski.
The RM58 Classic Chair
The classic chair is available on STYYLISH in black, white, yellow, green.
The RM58 Matte Chair
You can find the RM58 Matte chair in red, black, white, milky white, grey, orange, turquoise, olive green, light green, yellow, purple on STYYLISH today!
RM58 Soft Chair
In a variety of different upholsteries
Legacy and Recognition
Modzelewski’s legacy endures through his designs, displayed in several museums, and through the work of Vzór available now on Styylish! The Museum of Art in Łodz, National Museum in Warsaw, and Victoria and Albert Museum in London house his artistic marvels, showing the enduring impact of his innovative approach to art and design.
The RM58 Chair in Your Living Space
Roman Modzelewski’s mark on the world of art and furniture design is a testament to his passionate, visionary approach. Thus, his innovative use of materials and pioneering designs have left a lasting legacy. His work has inspired generations of artists and designers to push the boundaries of creativity. Consider adding one of the iconic RM58 Chairs to your home and be a part of design history. The RM58’s sleek, organic appearance makes it a perfect statement piece in a room of any style.