The History of the Frankfurter Kitchen Chair

In 1934/35, Max Stoelcker, son of the then owner and founder of the Holzindustrie Stoelcker with two factories in Ettenheim and Frankenberg in Hesse, began to think about how to improve the production processes of chairs known until then. It was important to him to reduce the chair to the components legs, seat and backrest and to omit connecting elements such as stirrups and rungs (see rung chair).

The front leg design developed in the process was registered in 1935 in Max Stoelcker's name at the Patent Office as a utility model under the designation: "Chair seat with rounded front frame and slotted front foot". In the construction, the front leg, front frame and seat bracket were glued together in a single operation, which ensured extraordinary durability and stability. The result was a simple chair with an unobtrusive design that was perceived as almost self-evident. In this simplicity and restraint lay and lies precisely its high quality.

The success of the model was enormous and in the first years thousands of copies were produced. In the fifties, when all well-known chair manufacturers began to produce imitation models modified in detail, the chair was used by the German Federal Railways, the Post Office, the German Armed Forces and many other authorities as well as schools. In most of the tender texts this very type of chair was described.

Both its construction and its enormous distribution make the Frankfurt chair a significant furniture design of the 20th century.

Incidentally, the revival was also triggered by a request from Pina Bausch for her dance theater in Wuppertal, where the chair has a "role" as an extra on which to dance and which is tossed back and forth - renewed evidence of its stability as well as lightness!