Apollo: Purposeful EaseB&B Italia x Cereal
The inward-facing comma shape of the chaise longue follows the contours of a reclining human form.
Maxalto has carved a path at the forefront of furniture design for almost five decades, from Afra and Tobia Scarpa’s iconic objects in the 1970s and 80s, to Italian architect and designer Antonio Citterio’s reinterpretation of modernism from the 1990s to the present day. The collection derives its name from the Venetian, massa alto, meaning ‘the highest’, and is dedicated to the principle in every regard, whether in the quality of its materials or the precision of its designs.
Having received a number of accolades for his work in the industrial design sector, Citterio is noted for his ability to incorporate architectural qualities into furniture design, often integrating traditional techniques and craftsmanship with modern shapes and materials. The designer’s latest addition to the Maxalto collection is Apollo, a series of three sofas, including a reconceived chaise longue with a low-slung backrest and floating base, upholstered in a soft, stone-coloured raised stitch.
Citterio drew inspiration for the collection from the beginning of the 20th century, referencing the typologies and expression of French design that emerged between the two world wars; an age which encompassed both the work of great Art Deco interior designers such as Jacques Adnet, Robert Mallet-Stevens and Jean-Michel Frank, and that of pioneering modernists architects, including Le Corbusier, Charlotte Perriand and Marcel Breuer. Still bearing hints of the innovative geometric forms that inspire it, the inward-facing comma shape of the chaise longue follows the contours of a reclining human form.
At a quiet London studio, the Apollo chaise longue shares a space with biscuit-toned, contoured ceramics by Paul Philp and Karina Smagulov, and textural, elemental works by Lawrence Calver and Liza Giles; juxtaposed with the blocky forms of oak and travertine plinths. In this considered setting, the chaise longue’s gentle design encourages purposeful ease, its curving form inviting those who sit on it to turn towards one another, welcoming conversation and engendering a sense of openness.