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A Vibrant Chair that Subverted the Outdoor Furniture Industry Earns its Due

With bold colors and a sleek minimalist form, Bend Goods’ Lucy Chair has spawned a legion of imitators and earned a place in LACMA’s permanent collection.

The Neon Lucy chair and Electric Blue Cloud bench are joining the Decorative Arts and Design collection at LACMA. (Photo courtesy of Bend Goods.)

In the chromatic world of Bend Goods, functionality doesn’t come at the expense of whimsy. Take the Lucy Chair, one of the brand’s earliest offerings. With its big personality, asymmetric triangle pattern on the back, and vibrant hues—orange, gold, peacock blue—it upended staid notions of outdoor furniture when it arrived onto the scene to the point where it became an instant classic and equally popular in interior spaces. Ten years on, it’s as influential as ever.    

Inspired by 1950s-era wire furniture, Bend Goods embodies the spirit of California’s indoor-outdoor character. Simple, versatile, and “built like a buffalo,” the brand’s chairs, tables, and accessories are casual and playful, yet possess enough sophistication to elevate the aesthetic of a high-end cocktail bar. They’re also museum-worthy: The Neon Lucy chair, along with the Electric Blue Cloud bench, recently caught the eye of Bobbye Tigerman, curator for the Decorative Arts and Design collection at LACMA, who acquired both pieces for the permanent collection once the cultural institution completes its renovation. 

The Lucy chair's asymmetric triangle pattern. (Photo courtesy of Bend Goods.)

Credit founder Gaurav Nanda for the brand’s shrewd balance of style and quality—one that unites geometric patterns and glossy metallic finishes with heady materials like galvanized iron and stainless steel for harsh environments. Before launching the L.A.–based furniture company in 2010, Nanda served as an automotive sculptor for General Motors, where he developed a talent for applying technical functionality to art and design. That skill set served him well as he took on the challenge of transforming wire furniture from dour afterthought into statement piece, a feat that’s earned the Lucy chair a well-earned place next to some of history’s most celebrated designs. 

Up next, Nanda says to look out for a softer side of Bend Goods— the launch of an upholstered sectional sofa inspired by 70’s Italian luxury furniture is in the works.

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