The Chair: Rethinking Culture, Body, and Design
Perhaps no other object of our daily environment has had the enduring cultural significance of the ever-present chair, unconsciously yet forcefully shaping the physical and social dimensions of our lives. With over ninety illustrations, this book traces the history of the chair as we know it from its crudest beginnings up through the modern office variety. Drawing on anecdotes, literary references, and famous designs, Galen Cranz documents our ongoing love affair with the chair and how its evolution has been governed not by a quest for comfort or practicality, but by the designation of status.Relating much of the modern era's rampant back pain to an increasingly sedentary lifestyle spent in traditional seating, Cranz goes beyond traditional ergonomic theory to formulate new design principles that challenge the way we think and live. A farsighted and innovative approach to our most intimate habitat, this book offers guidelines that will assist readers in choosing a chair-and designing a lifestyle-that truly suits our bodies. Praise for The Chair: "[A] concise, multidisciplinary gem."--Publishers Weekly "Cranz is no sedentary historian. The Chair is a call to action."--Jonathan Levi, Los Angeles Times "Galen Cranz has written a provocative book. Pull up a comfortable chair-if you can find one-and read it."--Witold Rybczynski
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List of Illustrations
How Chairs Evolved
Whats Wrong with the Chair?
Toward BodyConscious Design
Other editions - View all
A. C. Mandal adjustable Alexander teachers Alexander Technique American anatomical angle architecture Art Nouveau artists back pain back support backrest balance chair Bernard Rudofsky body body-conscious design body-mind C-shaped century chair design chair sitting chairback Charles Eames Charlotte Perriand comfort contemporary Corbusier Courtesy create cultural curve David Robinson decoration desk Eileen Gray environment ergonomic ergonomic researchers Figure floor forward Galen Cranz Giedion gonomic head height human ideas kneeling chair knees Le Corbusier legs look lounge chair lower back lumbar support Mandal Marcel Breuer movement muscles neck office chair pelvis perching person Peter Opsvik Photo physical planar position problems reclining rest right-angle seated rockers seated posture shape Siegfried Giedion sit bones sitter slump social somatic disciplines space spine squat standing status stools structure style surfaces thighs upright Wassily chair women York