Design Knowledge Intermediary

Antropus Chair, 1949
Arflex, Italy

Marco Zanuso

Fabric-covered latex foam, moulded plywood

W 75 cm, H 85 cm, D 102 cm


The Antropus was the first chair manufactured by Arflex, a division of the Pirelli Company which had commissioned Zanuso in 1948 to investigate the potential of latex foam as an upholstering material.

The following comes from an interview published by ‘Ottagono’ in 1980: Marco Zanuso relates that this chair was created in 1949 in the course of experiments with foam rubber at Pirelli before arflex was set up. They were difficult years, and these were the first attempts to identify ways to manufacture, on an industrial scale, foam rubber upholstery for domestic use. Zanuso points out that in his experience as a designer, this model - which only went into production thirty years later - was above all an important opportunity to experiment in the transition from craft-based manufacturing methods to industrial processes.

"As we look into the future, we cannot allow ourselves to lose sight of the new distribution standards. We must design for them. There will be increasingly little space to play with and only what is necessary will go into that space. There will be no room for anything superfluous ...".