Prototype of ‘teatro open,’ the next generation model of the teatro chair designed by Aldo Rossi & Luca Meda for Molteni&C, Italy.
The teatro chair is a representative product of Molteni, manufactured for the Carlo Felice Opera House in Genoa in 1983. With a wooden frame and leather or fabric upholstery, it is a contemporary design chair that combines classical and modernity. It is still in production and sale today as one of the company’s most popular chairs.
In 1988, the “teatro open” was offered as a prototype sample only to a few major flag stores worldwide before commercialization as a next-generation model of the “teatro” chair, completely redesigned using metal materials.
The aluminum frame, stainless steel mesh seat surface, and the rough finishing of the small batch of handmade pieces are evidence of the designer’s intent.
The “teatro open” was not commercialized for various reasons and was discontinued after only this prototype, so there is no possibility that the actual product will ever appear on the market. The only other model that can be identified is a chair on display at Molteni’s 80th-anniversary exhibition in 2017, which the company owns.
Moreover, despite being a prototype model, this chair is proudly introduced and displayed on the company’s website, positioning it as an essential model in its history. This chair will remain valuable in the history of Molteni and furniture design. It is genuinely a museum-class collectible.