Robin Day 1915-2010

Photo by Eamonn Mccabe

British furniture designer Robin Day has died; he was 95.
His pioneering early post-war achievements were to a certain extent eclipsed by the phenomenal success of the Polypropylene chair. As the first (and arguably the best) plastic shell chair ever created, it was a landmark in modern design. Cheaper, lighter and tougher than plywood, or any form of plastic on the market at the time, injection-moulded polypropylene proved to be the ideal material for budget furniture. Day took full advantage of its unique properties, devising a masterly and comfortable solution with ingenious structural and technical details. The original stacking chair was followed by an armchair version in 1967. In 1971 he created the graduated tots-to-teens Series E school chairs, followed by the indoor-outdoor Polo chair with its distinctive drainage/ventilation holes in 1975. The Polypropylene chair family was also adapted for stadium seating, and by the 1980s Day had emerged as an international specialist in this field. He also experimented with other plastics during the 1960s and 70s, as well as continuing to refine his designs in wood and steel.
Earlier this year we posted about the death of his wife, textile designer Lucienne Day.