It's a Classic

Ludwig Mies van der Rohe's Brno Armchair Offers Easy Elegance

This Brno chair was created by Mies van der Rohe and his design partner, Lily Reich, for a couple whose grandson lives in Sarasota.

By Marsha Fottler January 25, 2016 Published in the February 2016 issue of Sarasota Magazine

Brno chair kxl1r3

The elegant Brno armchair was created in 1929 by Ludwig Mies van der Rohe and design partner Lily Reich for a modernist home being built in Brno, Czech Republic, for Fritz and Grete Tugendhat, whose grandson lives in an award-winning modern home in Sarasota. The original chair was crafted of stainless steel and upholstered in leather. The C-curve of the frame made it comfortable, strong and innovative in its stark simplicity. In 1938, the Tugendhats, who were Jewish, fled Czechoslovakia and the Gestapo seized their home. That same year Mies van der Rohe left Europe for the United States. Lily Reich ended up in a concentration camp until 1943. Today the Tugendhat house is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The Brno chairs are still produced by Knoll, for about $1,900 each. Always buy a pair, because they’re meant to be grouped.

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