15 March 2010

Chair by Arturo Pani

I found this Midcentury Mexican chair by Arturo Pani on 1stdibs and I just love it. The restored hand forged chair is covered in 22K Gilt and features new silk upholstery.

The history of Arturo Pani is actually quite interesting. He was born in Mexico City to a well known diplomatic family. At the age of 4 in 1919 he traveled with his family to live in Europe as his father was appointed Mexico’s Counsel General to Belgium, later moving to Milan as his father’s position changed. In 1925 the family settled in Paris and remained there until 1935.

Arturo was the younger brother of Mario Pani, well known Mexican Modernist Architect and editor of the magazine Architectura/Mexico for over 40 years. After completing studies in the private school Janson de Sailly both Mario and Arturo entered the Ecole des Beaux Arts in Paris. Mario was inclined toward architecture and Arturo chose decoration and interior design. Both brothers returned to Mexico City by 1935.

Arturo’s first project was the furniture design and decoration of the family house on Lieja Street. Mario’s first major project was the construction of the Hotel Reforma in 1936 which became the emblem of Mexican Modernism. Arturo Pani was given free reign to design the furniture and interiors of the lobby and several salons of the Hotel Reforma. Diego Rivera created the murals for the one of the dining rooms. The social standing of the family allowed Arturo to begin his career with the decorating company De la Pena, Lascurain y Compania. The company took advantage of the Pani name and presented Arturo as the Senior Decorator.

Arturo Pani went on to create a career that spanned over 40 years. He became “the” decorator to the elite of Mexico City and his studio, Arturo Pani SA, remained at Niza #30 well into the 1970s. In the late 1950s Pani became known internationally for creating the “Acapulco Look”.

While this beautiful chair may be available for sale today, it is not certain that it will be around to purchase tomorrow. It just caught my eye and I had to feature it here. For more information, click here.