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The 200-125 VAR Chair: The story of a bridge partner

Reviving Design Icons is our passion – which is why it is with great pleasure that we present yet another design by Józef Chierowski, brought back to life 45 years after its creation. The 200-125 VAR Dining Chair, nicknamed “Aga”, is a mature and sophisticated design. It was created in 1975, and its story begins during a long evening spent with friends over an endless game of bridge…

200-125 VAR Chair

Late 70sPhoto from Family archives

200-125 VAR Series

200-125 VAR ChairBoucle Coll. - Mustard

200-125 VAR Series

200-125 VAR ChairBoucle Coll. - Sierra

And then there was a Chair…

Was it one night, or many? Was it sparked by a friend’s jest or a passing thought in the designer’s mind? We will never know for certain. It is nonetheless known that Józef Chierowski would often play bridge with his friends, who would often mention that a soft playing chair was preferable to a hard one. And thus a design was born: the 200-125 VAR – very compact, incredibly comfortable, with a seat and backrest soft to a degree rarely achievable in such a small size.

200-125 VAR Chair

Late 70sPhoto from Family archives

200-125 VAR Series

200-125 VAR ChairBoucle Coll. - Denim

Furniture exhibition in the "Emilia" pavilion, Warsaw

366 ArmchairPhoto from Family archives

From 366 to VAR

The VAR Dining Chair is a mature and sophisticated design characterised by its minimalist danish-inspired shape. Sturdy, trapezoidal wooden legs give the sizeable seat and the backrest, entirely upholstered and filled with soft foam, an appearance of lightness. Józef Chierowski’s sketches give us an opportunity to retrace the designer’s search for ideal proportions for his new project. The designer used already-known shapes and elements – the reference to the legs of the 366 Armchair is quite clear – and combined them with new ones, all the while removing obsolete features, such as the visible screws in the original 366. It is clearly an evolution of sorts – both in the designer’s taste and intuition and his approach to increasingly bold danish design.

Social Club space project by Józef Chierowski

Early 60sPhoto from Family archives

The VAR in the 70s

The 200-125 VAR Dining Chair was released in 1975. Fascination for debate and book clubs, such as the journalist’s club, was at its peak, which is why the VAR Chair quickly became popular not only among card lovers, but also among those fond of lounging in the first “Empik” shops and press clubs – interior designs of which can also be found in Józef Chierowski’s portfolio.

200-125 VAR Series

200-125 VAR ChairBoucle Coll. - Denim

200-125 VAR Series

200-125 VAR ChairBoucle Coll. - Sierra

Furniture exhibition in the "Emilia" pavilion, Warsaw

200-125 VAR ChairPhoto from Family archives

How did we revive the 200-125 VAR Chair?

Recreating the design of Józef Chierowski’s VAR proved much more difficult than with other furniture designs already in our portfolio. All the technical drawings were lost to time. It was only with the help of the designer’s daughter and thanks to a large number of prototypes held at our workshop that we succeeded in recreating the original design, the calm dynamic of lines and the balanced proportions of the VAR. The first VAR Dining Chair was created based on a photograph of a display at “Emilia” from the XXs, donated to our company by the family archive. We were proud and overwhelmingly excited to be able to present our first prototype in Paris during the last Maison et Objet design fair, where to our delight it was met with tremendous interest from the visitors.

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