Academic thesis

Tim Bechtold: Polyurethane in furniture design of the 1960ies. Technology – Degradation – Conservation. With focus on polyurethane coated textiles Back
Language: Original   -   Translation
Abstract: Towards the end of the 1960s, it was all the fashion to upholster furniture with a polyurethane coated fabric called "Knautschlack? (crushed patent leather) or "wet-look?. Two pieces of Italian designer furniture serve as examples to demonstrate the short life of this material. Highly sensitive to photo-oxidation and hydrolytic processes, it is also subject to attack by microorganisms: all of these factors influence the structure of the fabric. Even pieces of a more recent date require keeping a watchful eye. Close study of the technology and scientific analyses including documentation of the materials employed permit reliable assessment of the sensitivity of the material. Such preliminary preparation aid in developing expedient conservation concepts. The extent of the detected damage, usually irreversible, proves how vital suited timely preventive measures are. The increasing use of plastic materials in furniture design and the lack of conservation experience in dealing with these products demand not only routine inspection of the objects but also further research.


Keywords: caoutchouc, plastic, furniture design, polyurethane, textile coating, wet-look
  • academic institution: Technische Universität München
  • kind of theses:  Diplomarbeit
  • main Tutor:  Prof. Dipl.-Restaurator Erwin Emmerling
  • assistant Tutor:  Dr. Christoph Krekel
  • date:  2002
  • Language:  German
  • pages:  147
  • pictures:  208
Auszüge in Restauro, Ausgabe 6, 2003

The Hornemann Institute offers only the information displayed here. For further information or copies of academic work, please contact the author or - if there is no contact provided - the secretariats of the respective faculties.