Friday, 2 January 2015

Miachael Thonet

Experimented heavily with the bentwood process and pioneered the mass production of furniture.
In 1819 he established his own furniture workshop in his home town of Boppard am Rhein, and around 1830 he started to experiment with laminated wood in the Biedermeier style. 

He showcased his work at the Koblenz 1841 exhibition, the same year he patented his wood bending process in England, France and Belgium. 

The following year he exhibited at Mainz, attracted the attention of the prince/court of Metternich and 
subsequently received an invitation to travel to Vienna. Setting up a company with Karl Leistler and going on to gain commissions from prince Liechtenstien and the british architect P.H. Desvignes.

Choosing to remain in Vienna, having gained a 5 year contract decorating a palace for Liechstenstien in the neo- rococo style with P.H. Devignes. Thonet set up a new workshop with his sons in Gumpendorf, (1849), focusing heavily upon developing techniques for mass production. 

He went on to exhibit his furniture at the 1851 Great exhibition, Crystal Palace, London. Receiving the bronze award for innovation and setting a precedent in industrial aesthetics that was later further developed during the art deco period by modernist designers. 

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