In 1975, Björn Hultén was commissioned to decorate the Swedish Embassy in Cairo. For the Embassy’s terrace, he designed and set out several foldable chairs. A solution that is a great deal more elegant than it might sound at first.
The same type of chair was a favourite of the British, a hundred years earlier, who took them to Egypt, which was then part of the Empire. To decorate an embassy with a former occupying power’s furniture might seem rather ill advised diplomatically.
Björn had already visited Cairo as early as 1960 to see the National Museum’s collection of furniture from Tutankhamon’s tomb. And there it was – the chair. Albeit in ebony, decorated with ivory and gold. Björn saw a wood and fabric chair that could be folded and carried.
So the chair on the terrace was a subtle but distinct reference to an Egyptian legacy, roughly three thousand years older than the British safari chair.
We should add that Kryss is an exceedingly comfortable chair to sit in, even if you’re not a diplomat.