Holy cow! These are awesome chairs! An absolute piece of sculptural art! They are the epitome of classic Italian mid-century modern design. Called the Fireside Ladderback chair and designed in 1939 by Gio Ponti for Casa e Giardino. We do not know the exact date this pair were made but most likely not after the 1950s. They are comprised of a gorgeous solid walnut frame and woven rush seat. The seat is exceptionally low and the ladderback is remarkably high. These iconic chairs are made up of two separate entities, a seat and a back, that are connected to form the complete chair. The seat portion consists of four simple legs with a taper at their bottom and a softly rounded top which are held together by turned and tapered footrails in alternating heights on the legs; and four top rails that not only hold the legs in place, but serve as the woven rush seat’s frame. Without the back attached this would be a marvelous stool on its own. The back is made of two round side rails which flare outward from bottom to top and have an angled cut to both bottoms and tops. They are connected by five graduating horizontal slats which have a lovely heart shaped curve to their upper edge. The back is then attached to the seat. Simply amazing! Do not worry about your design style, these go with anything. Classic. Lovely. Iconic.
Giovanni “Gio” Ponti 1891-1979 was an Italian architect, industrial designer, furniture designer, artist, teacher, writer, and publisher who was interested in the arts from early childhood and excelled at painting with a career that spanned six decades. He became an architect in 1921 which was after the war had intervened and his education had been postponed. By the 1950s he had gained international fame with the design of the Pirelli Tower in Milan. During his career he designed more than 100 buildings in Italy and the world. He founded, in 1928, and directed almost all his life the magazine Domus which contributed largely to the Italian-style art of living. He taught at the Milan Polytechnic School from 1936 to 1961 training several generations of designers. And he contributed to the creation of one of the most important design awards: the Compasso d’Oro prize. In 1946 Ponti designed several series for Venini, becoming their first designer after WWII. His furniture and accessories designs are prized and sought after throughout the world.
I am totally in love with these chairs. You should be too. You better hurry to make them yours!