Design: Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, approx. 1928, reseen by Studio Besau Marguerre, 2019
Just in time for imm cologne 2020, the re-edition of the MR 515 side table range is being extended with versions in oak, ash and walnut. In honour of the Bauhaus centenary, the versatile classic was reissued in collaboration with Studio Besau Marguerre – as a re-edition of an original version that featured in Thonet’s tubular steel furniture catalogue of 1935. Originally available with a tubular steel frame and transparent glass top, the series now includes a version with wooden tabletops that brings warmth and naturalness to the range.
Mies van der Rohe probably designed the MR 515 table around 1928 in the context of the commissions for the Esters and Lange houses in Krefeld. Thonet has taken a fresh look at his original and is now presenting new interpretations of the MR 515 by Hamburg-based designers Eva Marguerre and Marcel Besau. The resulting adaptations bring out the elegance of the classic piece with great sensitivity and accentuate the special materials, combining modern usage concepts and technical details with a thoroughly contemporary touch.
The design by Studio Besau Marguerre – classic elegance meets zeitgeist
There’s a special story behind Marcel Besau’s connection with Mies van der Rohe. Besau was born and raised in Krefeld: he grew up with the legendary architect’s work – the Esters and Lange houses were right under his nose, so to speak. His and Eva Marguerre’s interpretation of the table range stays close to the original, but it’s the details that make the difference. Interventions like the remarkably elegant central crossover of the table legs are both subtle and technically sophisticated. Based on their research into the original versions of the table, they also pick up on the idea of an optional lower shelf that gives the series an even cosier look and enhances its functionality.
The colour concept also originates from Studio Besau Marguerre. The classic version with a chrome-plated tubular steel frame and glass top comes closest to Mies van der Rohe’s original design. They also created a completely black version with a powder-coated deep black frame and a grey, almost opaque glass top. In 2020, new tabletops with wood veneers are being added to the range. Available in oak, ash and walnut, these versions of the MR 515 side table will make their debut in Café Thonet at imm cologne.
The new versions in detail
The original MR 515 side table by Mies van der Rohe is 60 cm high with a tabletop measuring 70 cm in diameter. Its interpretation by Studio Besau Marguerre features round tables in two sizes: MR 516, a bigger, lower version with a diameter of 70 cm and a height of 38 cm, and MR 517, a smaller, taller version with a diameter of 50 cm and a height of 46 cm. On request, these two models are also available with an additional shelf (MR 516/1 and MR 517/1). And other versions are by no means out of the question: historical photos and vintage portals show the design in other sizes and tabletops in entirely different materials.
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