Seagull Chairs by Arne Jacobson

Seagull Chairs by Arne Jacobson

Whilst designing the Danish National Bank between the years 1965 and 1978, Arne Jacobsen conjured up a chair that would not only set off the strict lines of the building but also inspire passion in the interiors press. 

A progression on from the Series 7 chair, he cut deep into the silhouette of the Seagull Chair (3108) in 1969 and curving the laminated sliced veneer to fit into the curve in your back he gave hard-working bankers the comfort they needed while securing a heap of editorial praise for himself. 

This highly sculpted, visually arresting chair was the talk of Copenhagen. People soon got word that some rather unusual looking chairs were featuring in their main bank. 

The teak version was used in the Danish National Bank’s staff lunchroom while Seagulls with leather upholstery were created for both lounge and meeting rooms. 

Jacobsen installed Swan Chairs, with tables and sofas from his 3300 series, in the lobby and banking hall. 

He put his lamps in offices and corridors and fitted doors with his famous door handle and bathrooms with those revolutionary Vola fittings that have been relentlessly copied around the world. 

The last of his line of laminated stacking chairs, the Seagull was offered with carefully curved armrests and a slightly wider shell. 

Debuting as the 3208 at the Danish Furniture Fair in 1970, it proved a huge media success, and a small run of children’s Seagulls were also made. 

However, the extremely complicated moulding process saw twenty per cent of seats arrive off the production line with defects, and by the end of the seventies the chair was taken out of production as it no longer made commercial sense. 

Technology caught up in 2007 when a slightly larger Seagull was reintroduced and rechristened Lily.

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Written by Simon
I am a published writer, journalist and photo-journalist. I have an MA in Creative Writing and Journalism from the University of Wales and my journalism has been published in a number of UK national newspapers including 'the Observer'. I have life long interest in creative design, art and function and this website is an exploration of that in all its forms and guises.