Furniture... made in Hollywood

Audrey-Hepburn

Mae West

Mary Jane West was a sex symbol. Born in 1893 and better known as Mae West, she was an American actress, ranked by the American Film Institute as 15th among the greatest female stars of all time. 

She was used to double entendres, like “I'm the lady who works at Paramount all day... and Fox all night” or “Too much of a good thing can be wonderful”, and during World War II Allied aircrew called their yellow inflatable, vest-like life preserver jackets "Mae Wests", partly from rhyming slang for "breasts" and "life vest" and partly because of the resemblance to her torso.

She was a famous star, back in her days, but fews know that when in 1972 Salvador Dalì designed – together with Oscar Tusquets - his celebrated Lips Sofa, one of the 20th century’s most sensuous and iconic pieces of furniture, he was dreaming of Mae West mouth, shaping his then wood and satin made creation accordingly.

Thanks to polyethylene rotational moulding technology and using a special process which gives the piece a slightly delicate feel, more than thirty years later, in 2004, it has been possible to reproduce the realism and expressive force which Dalí dreamt of for this large-scale mouth, which you can sit on or sink into.

Marilyn Monroe

Although relegated in 25th position in the above mentioned list of greatest female stars of all time, the woman born Norma Jeane Mortensen and worldwide known as Marilyn Monroe was, probably thank to her sultry, mouth-half-open smile that became her signature, one of the two, three sexiest woman that ever played in a movie.

She was acutely aware of what a Hollywood creation "Marilyn Monroe" was and of the differences between her private self and the woman she played onscreen and in public. Author pal Truman Capote once wrote that, after a lunch together, she went to the powder room and stayed so long that he went in to find her. When he discovered her in front of the mirror and asked what she'd been doing, she replied, "Looking at Her."

One of her blockbusters, The Seven Year Itch, eventually inspired a piece of furniture - the Marilyn lounge chair, of course - designed by Spanish architect Borja Abellan and his designer colleague Nacho Soler, that features a minimalist aesthetic that is both clean and fresh and which mimics the white lines of a Monroe’s infamous dress: as a matter of fact, the Marilyn lounge chair pays tribute to the memorable scene in which she lays flat at first and then rises up with a gentle curve, when a backrest is needed.

Audrey Hepburn

Audrey Hepburn was a British actress active during Hollywood’s Golden Age and is recognised as both a film and fashion incomparable icon. She has always been ranked as one, if not the first, of greatest female screen legends in the history of American cinema and has been placed in the International best dressed people Hall of Fame.

Born in Ixelles, a district of Bruxelles, she spent her childhood between Belgium, England and the Netherlands, including German-occupied Arnhem during the Second World War. In Amsterdam she studied ballet before moving to London, where she performed as a chorus girl in West End musical theatre productions as from 1948.

She starred in various history-making movies, such as Roman Holiday, which granted her the Academy Award; Sabrina; My Fair Lady and the legendary Black Edward’s Breakfast At Tiffany’s. Although she appeared in fewer films as her life went on, Hepburn remains one of few people who won Academy, Emmy, Grammy and Tony Awards.

Playing the role of Holly Golightly in the movie that was originally supposed to be directed by John Frankenheimer, Audrey Hepburn ends up laying on an extravagant sofa, that is placed right in the centre of Holly's living room: that couch was an old-fashioned bathtub split in half and in some scenes you can still see the gold handles at one end and the legs on the bottom.

It would have been unforgettable: Audrey Hepburn made it immortal.

 

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