Jean Prouve – Designer in Focus

Jean Prouve was a French metal worker, Architect and designer. His main achievement was transferring manufacturing technology from industry to architecture, without losing aesthetic qualities. His design skills were not limited to one discipline.

He was a founding member of the Union des Artistes Modernes (UAM) in 1930. In the following year he established his own manufacturing firm, Les Ateliers Jean Prouvé. During the 1930s, the company produced numerous furniture designs, as well as some of the first prefabricated architectural elements, including components for the Maison du Peuple in Clichy (in collaboration with the architects Beaudoin and Lods), whose steel-and-glass structure attracted a great deal of attention.

He taught as professor at the Conservatoire des Arts et Métiers (CNAM) from 1957-70. As chairman of the jury for the Centre Pompidou architectural competition in 1971, he played a major role in selecting the design of Renzo Piano and Richard Rogers.

Between 1980-84, Prouvé again turned his attention to the further development of his furniture designs. He died in Nancy in 1984. In many of his works, Jean Prouvé achieved the goal of uniting functional requirements, the honest use of materials and economical concerns with the complex demands of mass production. Beginning in 2002, in close collaboration with the Prouvé family, Vitra has devoted itself to the re-edition of numerous designs by this great constructeur.

A firm favourite here at Cimmermann, Jean Prouve’s designs are truly unique and offer an alternative to the norm.

Our favourites include the Standard Chair and Standard SP Chair – a new version made of moulded plastic and metal.

Jean Prouve Standard SP Chair
Standard SP Chair and EM Table with laminate top – love the green
He also designed lights, a true classic Potence is one of a kind.

Jean Prouve - Potence Light
Potence Light

For the Cite University in France he designed the Cite Chair – lucky students.

Jean Prouve - Cite Chair
Cite Chair with red arms and beige fabric

Some of Prouve’s early vintage pieces fetch big money from collectors nowadays.

Prouve Desk and Chair
Vintage Prouve Desk and Chair
Prouve Sideboard
Jean Prouve Vintage Sideboard – a thing of beauty

Prouve’s architecture has the same simple lines as his furniture.

Early Prouve building
Early Prouve building


Jean Prouve - House and Antony Chairs
Jean Prouve house and his iconic Antony Chairs
Jean Prouve's House
Exterior of Jean Prouve’s house in the French Winter

Jean Prouve was a visionary whose designs live on today and will do for many years to come.

See more from Jean Prouve on our Pinterest Board.

The Team at Cimmermann