Thursday, December 2, 2010


In search for a place to sit... Amidst the intense studio this fall, 3 electives, TA-ing, and work-study, I thought I'd try to make a chair, something I've never done before... I'm not quite sure what I was thinking, but I suppose at the end of it, I would have a chair to lean on after I've completely exhausted myself!

The instructor, Andrew Jones, gave us the seemingly simple task of designing and making a plywood chair (for a museum cafe) using only plywood. The term gave way to many iterative studies of a singular material. The class contributed an assortment of ideas along with discoveries about the many challenges of furniture design including joinery, structure, and ergonomics. Congrats everyone on all the hard work and grueling hours in the wood shop!

A jumble of ideas... trying to understand the planar behaviour of plywood assembly

The most challenging part of this design was the hiding/revealing of structural ribs and the alignment of the curved seat and back to the frame for a flush finish. No screws were used in the assembly, only pressure and glue.

It's a handsome one! and the chair too...

The critics complemented the chair's quiet confidence. For the assignment, a museum cafe chair, the design is appropriate when imagining say 100 of them in its setting, where the clean (muji-esque) aesthetic will not create too much noise. Andrew also said he's never seen the ribs revealed to the side like that before, subtle innovation.

Papa chair, mama chair, baby chairs...

ZG's plywood chair

SR's plywood chair

An assortment of plywood chairs

Some chairs experienced some growing pains... ;)

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