Task chairs

Task swivel chairs are specifically designed for office work and are indispensable to employees’ well-being and comfort, and to a productive, efficient and enjoyable working environment.

A classic among task swivel chairs is Charles and ray Eames’s Vitra-manufactured ‘Aluminium group EA 117’. This swivel task chair is height-adjustable, its seat of stretched leather provides comfortable, ergonomic seating, and it is equipped with practical armrests and a castor base.

Other iconic mid-century designs are Arne Jacobsen’s ‘Lily™’ for Fritz Jacobsen, a height-adjustable office chair with a sensuous, ergonomic plywood seat, an Egon Eiermann’s elegantly technical ‘SBG 197 R’, a height-adjustable steel task swivel chair with a plywood seat and an adjustable plywood backrest, manufactured by Wilde + Spieth.

The first two examples have inspired countless designers in creating task swivel chairs. The elegant, plastic shell of ‘PURE’ designed for FORMvorRAT by Claus Breinholt, which features an elegant, aluminium base, the organically shaped plywood seat of the ‘Concept C Stools’ task chairs, designed by Jörg Bernauer for Klöber, or the Alfredo Häberli’s ‘Enna studio’ office chair for Alias, with an upholstered seat and a height-adjustable, castor base, can all be traced to these earlier precedents.

Pushing the formal envelope, Maarten van Severen’s ‘.04’ task swivel chair for Vitra is an austere, minimal object, but being made out of polyurethane foam, it remains comfortable and yielding. A more ergonomic approach, already hinted at in Eiermann’s design has proved just as fruitful. Peter Opsvik’s ‘HÅG H05 5500’ by SB Seating deconstruct the task chair into all of its constituent elements: the seat, the backrest, the armrests and the headrest are then assembled and adjusted into an optimal position.

Other developments have been made in Uli Witzig’s segmented ‘Sitagwave swivel chair’ for Sitag, which adapts to user’s body without any mechanisms, instead utilising the yielding nature of its materials and joints, or in Paul Brooks’s ‘Ahrend 2020’ task swivel chair for Ahrend, which cleverly integrates all the necessary mechanism within its sleek body, while providing a flexible mesh backrest with lumbar support, adjustable armrests, tilting, height-adjustability and, as is the industry standard, a castor base.

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