Nendo designed a collection for the Exhibition Home Living Boundless Design hosted by KUKA a furniture company based in Hangzhou, China.
The theme given to us was intelligence, and the characteristics of KUKA is a range of upholstered sofas and lounge chairs. These made us focus on an intrinsic value of softness, and decide to take a different approach in expressing soft, comfortable furniture. To push the boundaries of comfort, rather than using standard padding materials such as urethane foam, cotton, plumage or springs or indeed cushions, we encouraged to use 1.5mm thick polycarbonate sheets, whose softness can be changed through lamination and how it is bent. Depending on the amount of space between laminated layers softness can be altered; with decreased curvature comes increased stiffness.
In this way furniture can be made that is soft at the point of human contact but strong at top board and the joint of the frame. While what is considered soft for furniture is not essentially visible we attempted to take it out and make it visually apparent, in doing so we hope to inspire a conscious perception of this in people’s minds and intelligence.
Photography, Hiroshi Iwasaki