Pressed Chair by Moormann: Flexible Powder Coatings ― 

The Pressed Chair, designed by Harry Thaler for Nils Holger Moormann, is a stackable chair with an aluminum body that is as reduced as it gets: This chair consists of just one piece of 2.5 mm sheet metal which obtains its stability by deformation, and a peripheral indentation.

The value of the design excels in the intent of creating a piece out of one single material without any joints or connectors. Furthermore, the manufacturing, which is carried out by a high-tech automobile industry in Bavaria, produces no waste material and is 100% recyclable.

Nils Holger Moormann is a furniture company with a distinctive personality, embodying the values of “New German Design”: Their pieces, minimalist and whimsical, test the limits of industrial materials, reducing everything to the bare essentials, with a clever idea always shining through. What is important for Moormann is not just to produce slender, elegant forms but to consider each object as part of a designed process. Based in Aschau im Chiemgau, a tiny Bavarian village next the border with Austria, the company employs local craftsmen, sources local materials wherever possible, and, besides their international outlook, prefer to use bicycles for their logistics. In Moormann’s work, environmental awareness goes hand in hand with form: the only amount of material used for production is the minimal one, often left untreated, and, in the case a finishing or coating is required, it needs to have the least impact on the environment, both in its production, application, and afterlife.

The pressed chair, which arrives in a flat-packed sheet and needs to be bent to shape by its user (or, as Moormann prefers to say, its “roommate”) is available in untreated aluminum, but also in a bold palette of glossy RAL powder coating colors, with a clever name given by the company: “Traffic White” (RAL 9016), “Not White” (RAL 1013), “Black 815” (RAL 9005), “True Red” (RAL 3000), “Dusky Pink” (NCS S 1515-Y90R), “Mister Mint” (RAL 130 80 20), “Greenhorn” (RAL 6037), “Blue Collar” (RAL 5002), and “Friesian Yellow” (RAL 1018).

Powder coatings and aluminum are obviously best friends, but the pressed chair requires more than just a color: since the chair is distributed flat, and needs to be bent for use, the baked powder coating needs to remain elastic; further, since the chair is intended both for indoor and outdoor use, and it is designed to be stackable, the color needs to be resilient, to avoid cracks and scratches, so its performance should comply with architectural rather than “simple” furniture specifications. Such powder coatings do exist: in the AkzoNobel Interpon range, we classify this technology in our Structura Flex powder coating colors, where polymerization retains the coating’s elasticity, making the color extremely resilient to deformations – willingly, or unwillingly.

The people at Nils Holger Moormann like to have a motto about their furniture: “No one gets it”. Well, we do. A design piece does not only need to be pretty, but designers and producers need to consider countless factors that are crucial in the process, besides appearance. Minimalism is not a fashion but an attitude, as it requires a great deal of thought, and foresight. We find this chair to be one of our favorite designs in that sense.