Wooden Chairs. Modernist Examples and Student Experiments
- Livia Nica-Rus / PhD assist. designer, “Ion Mincu” University of Architecture and Urbanism, Bucharest, RO
The wooden chair is an object as much present in our lives as it is fascinating. Modern examples of good practice are worth researching and continue to inspire the creativity of designers.
The research starts with the study of notable historical references from the modern period and of the way in which the experiments of furniture makers and of the adjacent industry have changed not only the shape of the chair but also people’s perception of the interior and of the objects inside it. Innovative examples of wooden chairs, some of the objects made by Michael Thonet and his sons, by Alvar Aalto and Aino Aalto and by Charles Eames and Ray Eames, are analyzed. Some of the student experiments required by the “Reversed design vs Re-new design: the wooden chair” university project are subsequently described. Most of these examples have as a starting point the works of the designers mentioned above. The freedom offered to the imagination by university workshops can lead to original and valuable solutions, which later on can be constructed with the help of the industrial environment to the ultimate benefit of the user. The examples detailed in the article demonstrate both the use of wood (and its derivatives) as a means of communicating synchronic social values and the innovative resources of sitting furniture design.
As society changes over time so do its needs and demands. Furniture (with the chair as its most representative item) has been and always will be a mirror/tool for society’s needs. For this reason, experiment as a vector of innovation cannot be absent from furniture design or from academic research.
innovative modern chairs, furniture design, student projects, wood and wood products, experiments
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