Gaetano Pesce Pratt Chair (no. 3) 1984

  • Not on view

As was common until recently in Italy, Pesce was trained as both architect and industrial designer, and his work straddles the boundaries between those two disciplines and visual art. Known for his highly conceptual approach, Pesce uses design to investigate the ways we perceive the objects that surround us. Through his boldly colorful work, he strives to forge an emotional connection with the user.

The Pratt Project, produced for the Pratt Institute in New York, is a series of nine experimental chairs formed by hand–injecting urethane resin of increasing densities into molds. The first chair is so soft that it cannot support even its own weight, and it collapses in on itself; only the ninth chair is strong enough to support an adult. The third chair, shown here, stands precariously on its warped base, although it is strong enough to support the weight of a small child. The swirling pattern of brightly multicolored urethane is made possible by the injection–molding process; the variations in color emphasize the sinuous lines that result from the material’s deformation. In this project Pesce explores fully the material properties and possibilities of urethane resin; in doing so he also calls into question the nature, form, function, and permanence of the chair itself.

Publication excerpt from The Museum of Modern Art, MoMA Highlights since 1980, New York: The Museum of Modern Art, 2007, p. 60.
Urethane resin
34 x 21 1/2 x 24" (86.4 x 54.6 x 61 cm)
Tracy Gardner Purchase Fund and Rob Beyer Purchase Fund
Object number
© 2024 Gaetano Pesce
Architecture and Design

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