S41 , Marcel Breuer , Tecta
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A design as simple as it is comprehensible: for his S41 chest of drawers (designed in 1924/27) Marcel Breuer stacked six drawer units, marking them alternately in contrasting colours: black and white. In turn, the black lacquered handles either merge with the equally black front or form a stark contrast. This creates a rhythm, which comes to rest again with the black glass top. It features a useful detail: the slightly raised edges of this “attica” keeps pens from rolling off the top.
With its strong architectural design, this chest of drawers clearly takes centre stage. Two handles on the sides strike a balance with its perfect shape, as if to hint that, from now on, chests of drawers should not remain in one spot but can be easily moved on castors. “God knows, I am all for informal living and for architecture in support of and as a background for this,” Breuer wrote in an essay, adding mischievously: “but we cannot evade the instinct of perfection – a truly human instinct.”
Breuer used these small chests of drawers with their vibrant black and white contrasts in all his interiors at Bauhaus Weimar from 1924 to 1926. Expressive basics that were always built according to human proportions with a highly aesthetic effect owing to their ingenuity. They have retained their signature handles until this very day.
The S41E version of the S41 chest of drawers is even lighter and more flexible, with a stainless steel body evoking the Bauhaus’ innovative use of tubular steel.
The Bauhaus Archive in Berlin has officially licensed the S41 from Tecta as an authentic Bauhaus production, made to the exact proportions of the original design.
- Marcel Breuer, Germany (1924)
- Lacquered black and white wood or stainless steel with side handles, castors and black glass top
- Made in Germany
- Width 30cm / 11.8"
- Height 70cm / 27.5"
- Depth 41cm / 16.1"
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