Werner Max Moser, 1931
Stylish, downright delicate and yet robust—moser is the epitome of the Swiss chair. To many Swiss people this simple design classic is the "chair of chairs".
Stylish, downright delicate and yet robust—moser is the epitome of the Swiss chair. To many Swiss people this simple design classic is the "chair of chairs": The 1–250 model, or the "Moser chair" as it became soon known amongst architects and in common parlance, has been in the limelight right from the start to become horgenglarus' best-known piece of furniture. It has been pictured in all horgenglarus catalogues published since 1932.
Architect Werner Max Moser first showcased his wooden chair in 1931 at the Neubühl home show in a version with a broad back. After the war the chair continued to be in great demand. It was pictured in 1954 on the title page of the product catalogue published by the Swiss association of workmen, and in 1958 its models "183 M" and "183 MA" received the "Die gute Form" award. Such glory attracts copycats but the archives say, "all the other similar or copied chairs are perceived to be plagiarism".
The Moser chair can be used in a multitude of environments and is very comfortable to sit also for extended periods. Werner Max Moser, a student of Frank Lloyd Wrights, limited his first furniture design to absolute essentials—yet the Moser chair with its round legs and their slight sways creates an air of familiarity. It is reminiscent of the era's bentwood chairs and of the classic horgenglarus chair. There are chairs with similar purism, a comparable level of stability and comfort, but it's the combination which makes the moser unique thanks to its stable seat frame. The quality of the wickerwork is also superior: The robust cane wickerwork is hand-woven into the chair frame and knotted there to give it distinctively more hold than machine wickerwork pressed into a groove. A continuity of proven elements, and they are as modern today as they were then.
Hand-woven cane seat, back, legs and seat frame solid bentwood
W42, D49, H80, SH46
Architect and furniture designer in Zurich. Studied at the architecture faculty at ETH Zurich. Internships with Grandpré-Molière in Rotterdam and Frank Lloyd Wright in the USA. Initial furniture designs for his father Karl Moser's practice. Co-founder of Wohnbedarf AG (1931) and of the architectural firm Haefeli, Moser, Steiger (HMS) (1937). From 1958, professor of architecture at ETH Zurich and doctor honoris causa at the Hochschule für Technik Stuttgart.