Visiteur Métropole FV 12 armchair, 1948
Holding to the principle laid down in 1941, the Métropole armchair—so named to distinguish it from its Colonial and Tropique variants—had some of its details modified in 1948–52. In 1948 the FV 11 was replaced by the FV 12: the slats of the seat and back were replaced by plywood sheets slotted into grooves in the wooden side members and reinforced with metal profiles. The legs were stiffened with transversal tubes mounted with wood or rubber washers and round-head screws, while the top of the backrest was fitted with a drawn wire crosspiece. The feet were protected with turned wood balls. A year later the title FV 13 signaled further changes, including modification of the profile of the side members, an increase in the tube diameter for the frame, and the introduction of aluminum variants for certain components, notably in the form of sheet metal for the seat and back. Sixty editions of this model were made in 1951. Bearing the name no. 350 from 1952 onwards, the model was then further developed. Improvements were made to its comfort with a softer profile for the seat, signaled by the more rounded line of the side members, and thicker cushioning. Solidity was boosted, notably via an increase in the diameter of the steel or aluminum bracing tubes and reinforcement of the seat—when it was made of aluminum—with metal plates. The back and seat were made of plywood, sheet steel or sheet aluminum; the braces were attached to the outside of the backrest with brass screws, and later with aluminum studs. Jean Prouvé’s 1953 design for a variant with an aluminum tubing frame, following a request from Aluminium Français, never went into production. The armchair no. 350 was marketed by Steph Simon until the late 1950s, being used in both office and domestic contexts.