B230 Contour armchairs by Grant Featherston

Made by Featherston, Grant in Australia, Oceania, 1953.

One of the new wave of Australian designers to emerge in the immediate post-war years, Grant Featherston (1922-1995) designed his first chair in 1947. In the early 1950s he developed the now famous ‘Contour’ range of chairs. First launched in 1951, the ‘Contour’ was an immediate success, its innovative plywood shell formed using a process that Featherston developed himself in the absence of suitable plywood bending technology locally. In 1957 Featherston was appointed consultant designer to Aris...


Object No.


Physical Description

Two 'B230 Contour' armchairs, moulded and shaped plywood shell, padded and upholstered. Tapered cylindrical legs, fitted to two diagonally crossed rolls beneath the seat:
-1) buttoned pink and cream striped fabric,
- 2) buttoned faded black, cream and green fabric.



980 mm


770 mm


840 mm



Designed by Grant Featherston [1922-1995] as part of the 'Contour' series, 1953.

The B230 was part of the 'Contour' range developed from the R152 Contour Chair launched in 1951. The range included chairs, settees and winged armchairs with many variations. The 'Contour' series grew to contain over 25 pieces of seating furniture with accompanying occasional and dining tables, as well as cabinets. A publicity brochure for the 'Contour' range stated:

'Designed with the concept of 'contour comfort' Featherston chairs with their firm moulded lines are built to fit the curves of the body. Constructed of laminated plywood, they are upholstered in with latex rubber seating and resilient curled hair back. Flexing with every change of position, these chairs make possible a new form of relaxation'.

At the launch party for the new range of 'Contour' chairs held at the Hotel Federal in Melbourne in 1953, a Melbourne socialite was lowered into a wet plaster covered chair to demonstrate the principal of 'contour comfort'.


Featherston, Grant 1953


Credit Line

Source unknown

Acquisition Date

27 February 1981

Cite this Object


B230 Contour armchairs by Grant Featherston 2018, Museum of Applied Arts & Sciences, accessed 21 October 2018, <https://ma.as/191803>


{{cite web |url=https://ma.as/191803 |title=B230 Contour armchairs by Grant Featherston |author=Museum of Applied Arts & Sciences |access-date=21 October 2018 |publisher=Museum of Applied Arts & Sciences, Australia}}


This object record is currently incomplete. Other information may exist in a non-digital form. The Museum continues to update and add new research to collection records.

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