Design of the 70's

The creations released in the 70s were often created in the late 60s. The protest developed in the 1960s, pushes the 1970s into soft with the creation of soft seats and poufs surrounded by sweet pop volutes. The design then rediscovers the soft curves of art nouveau but enhanced with poetry colors, pop art is omnipresent in art and decoration.

The craziest projects respond to this new art of living: one collapses in front of the TV on cushions placed everywhere and foam sofas, the cupboards are encrusted in the walls, containers become spaces to live. The seat becomes Bubble by Eero Amio or chauffeuse by Olivier Mourgue, or inflatable by Aubert or Quasar Khanh, reissued by Branex. Reflection of the mad liberation of bodies and behaviors: the Sacco. It is not a seat but a bag in the form of a pear where one slumps. This structureless object comes from a long mutation: first its three Turin designers: Gatti, Paolini and Teodoro fill it with water and then with ping-pong balls, to finally fill a few million polystyrene balls with it, Industrialized around 1969 becoming a mythical object of the relaxed years.

The so-called mythical seats today are numerous to see the light of day in the 70's. For example, in 1972, Arata Isozaki's elegant Marylin Chair and the Tam-Tam stool will emerge. The latter was created in 1967 by Henry Massonnet, owner of a fishing equipment company. This lightweight, removable fisherman's seat becomes an icon. What child of the 70s did not sit on an orange Tam Tam?

The United Kingdom, with its Council of Industrial Design, advocates an industrial design policy that gives it a status as a model, a fitting of forms and functions, largely conveyed by Peter Murdoch's creations and his cardboard furniture. In France, the first exhibition of the Center of Industrial Creation in 1969 "What is design? Joe Colombo, Charles Eames, Verner Panton ... and the revelation of Frenchman Roger Tallon with Olivier Mourgue, Pierre Paulin and Marc Berthier. The couple Claude and François Lalanne developed a style of interior decoration both daring and chic, between design and plastic art, which enters the Elysee and becomes famous.

In 1970, it was the foundation of the Atelier A uniting Adzak, Arman, Césr, Raysse, Sanejouand to publish furniture and objects by artists. It is also the beginning of a distinction between designer and decorator. The term "Interior Architect" makes everyone agree.

But it is especially in Italy that the design explodes, pushed by the now famous Salona del mobile di Milano. Already famous for its famous Valentine in 1969, the firm Olivetti develops a dynamic of design that attracts the best creators of the earth and draws in its wake the industry of the objects of house. A formidable connivance links production companies such as Cassina or Fiorucci, engines and promoters, who will each create their own style.

This fireworks disappears with the two oil shocks of 1973 and 1979, which limit these carefree Trente Glorieuses. Brake on oil, plastic has become too expensive.


They are usually synthetic, with brilliant, translucent effects like stainless steel, formica, plexiglass, resin .... The moods are anti-conformist, futuristic, the more flashy the better!


  • Pierre Paulin
  • Joe Colombo
  • Arata Isozaki
  • Olivier Mourgue
  • Roger Tallon
  • Charles Eames