So 25 years after ist debut, De Padova is celebrating with a new version of iconic SILVER chair. A way to commemorate the collaboration between the company and Vico Magistretti.
This is how SILVER was born, in capital letters, entirely in aluminium, light, elegant, strong. A single model, the one with armrests, glowing and sophisticated, to light up our living spaces.
At least in the case of Magistretti’s masterpieces for De Padova, which came from heated discussions, the acting out of clashing roles, and sudden flashes of intuition. Vico was the ‘maestro’ unexpectedly challenged by Maddalena, the entrepreneur. A game in which both parties were fully aware of the valor of their opponent, a creative game in which they pretended to struggle to see where it would lead.
SILVER also happened like that. At the end of the 1980s. Maddalena De Padova WANTED a new chair. She wanted it to be elegant and simple. She knew these were characteristics of Vico’s designs.
I don’t like it Vico, it’s just not right. I don’t either, but I still don’t understand what kind of chair you have in mind… [Maddalena begins to leaf through a furniture magazine] Just look how beautiful the Thonet is…like the Shaker chairs. I’m thinking of this simplicity, this elegance.
Magistretti began to work on the materials, trying to reinvent the Thonet, and later he told the story like this: the seat and back of my SILVER chair come from Japan. During a trip there, wandering through the markets, I saw baskets that were used for eggs. This is how the SILVER seat and back were created.
Vico sent the sketch of Silver to Maddalena, with two handwritten lines: you do not like this. A little jab, knowing he had already hit the target. Curiosity, the ability to see beyond the surface of things, and lots of humor to overcome conflict. This is the story behind SILVER.
In my life I must have made about fifty chairs. Maybe ten of them remain, but if I hadn’t made all fifty I would not have made the ten survivors either. In the end what counts is the effort, the work, the attention, never being satisfied.
SILVER is definitely one of the ten.
Text by Didi Gnocchi