French industrial designer, architect and engineer Jean Prouvé (April 8, 1901 – March 23, 1984) whose work blurred the line.
Somewhere between the mathematical and the aesthetic, he is perhaps best remembered for his solid yet agile furniture designs, as well as his role innascent prefab housing movement. In addition to all these features, his prowess in metal fabrication inspired also the structural
Born in Paris, the son of artist Victor Prouvé and pianist Marie Duhamel, Jean Prouvé grew up surrounded by the ideals of L’École de Nancy, where he studied from the age of 13 to 16. The school emphasized the importance of using industrial technologies in the creation of art, as well as promoting products to the masses, leading Prouvé to embrace these values and since then to treat art as an industry in itself.
In 1924, aged 22, Prouvé opened his first studio. Working in wrought iron and steel, he manufactured lamps, chandeliers and handrails, and designed his first piece of furniture, La Chaise Inclinable. The reclining chair was the first to use the flat steel tube technique that Prouvé had developed in his studio, which allowed the chair to be folded and stacked. During this period, Prouvé also produced details for numerous buildings throughout France, including the gates of the Verdun Memorial and several houses designed by Robert Mallet-Stevens.