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Poster, Aeron Chair

This is a Poster. It was made for (as the client) Herman Miller Furniture Company. It is dated 2012 and we acquired it in 2014. Its medium is digital print and screenprint on paper. It is a part of the Drawings, Prints, and Graphic Design department.

Since its founding in 1901, Herman Miller has sought to promote its brand of modern furniture design through art and illustration. Over the years, the company has produced posters by such graphic design luminaries as Armin Hoffmann, Stephen Frykholm, John Massey and Don Ervin, that have become as iconic as the products themselves.

In 2012, under the direction of Stephen Frykholm, Herman Miller, Inc. solicited proposals from a group of international graphic designers for a limited edition poster campaign that would highlight ten of their iconic products still in production. Ten posters, produced in a limited edition of ten copies of each, were printed and exhibited in a small traveling show titled THEN x TEN, which showcased the posters alongside reproductions of ten historical posters selected by Frykholm. The show originated at fortyfivedownstairs, a gallery in Melbourne, Australia in August of 2012, and subsequently traveled to Singapore, Tokyo, and Art Basel Miami.

Kam Tang was among the ten image makers who received the commission. Each designer was encouraged to choose a product, and Tang chose the Aeron chair, designed by William Stumpf (American, 1936 - 2006) and Donald Chadwick (American, b. 1936). Tang felt passionately about the Aeron chair, because he is a committed user of one in his everyday practice. (He saved up to buy his own after he graduated from college). For his design, Tang wanted to highlight the unique mesh material that makes up the back and seat of the Aeron chair. Tang has written that the mesh, called Pellicle, “broke new ground and I wanted to capture this new dawn/horizon.” He sought to “convey a sense of lightness to communicate the material’s transparency and breathing capabilities.” To do so, Tang chose to remove the chair from the office environment and showcase it as a landscape. The poster cleverly showcases the seat of the chair in shimmering gold, with the radiating lines of the mesh seat set against a bold sunset.

This object was donated by Herman Miller Furniture Company. It is credited Gift of Herman Miller.

  • Poster, Exhibition Poster
  • offset lithograph.
  • Museum purchase from General Acquisitions Endowment and Smithsonian....
  • 1999-45-9

Our curators have highlighted 13 objects that are related to this one. Here are three of them, selected at random:

  • Poster, Exhibition Poster
  • offset lithograph.
  • Museum purchase from General Acquisitions Endowment and Smithsonian....
  • 1999-45-8

Its dimensions are

H x W: 189.2 × 120 cm (6 ft. 2 1/2 in. × 47 1/4 in.)

It is inscribed

Imprinted in black ink, right margin: © Kam Tang 2012 Aeron™ chair THEN X TEN --A Herman Miller Exhibition © 2012 Herman Miller, Inc. Zeeland, Michigan USA 4[in graphite]/10; [blind stamp round] 20 H / M 12

Cite this object as

Poster, Aeron Chair; Client: Herman Miller Furniture Company (United States); Australia; digital print and screenprint on paper; H x W: 189.2 × 120 cm (6 ft. 2 1/2 in. × 47 1/4 in.); Gift of Herman Miller; 2014-19-1

This object was previously on display as a part of the exhibition Making Design: Recent Acquisitions.

There are restrictions for re-using this image. For more information, visit the Smithsonian’s Terms of Use page.

For higher resolution or commercial use contact ArtResource.

If you would like to cite this object in a Wikipedia article please use the following template:

<ref name=CH>{{cite web |url= |title=Poster, Aeron Chair |author=Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum |accessdate=5 February 2023 |publisher=Smithsonian Institution}}</ref>