Melting illusions at London2011

Philipp Aduatz’s Melting Chair looks like it's melting away, capturing that fleeting moment of transition into a useable object.

Philipp Aduatz’s Melting Chair at the London Design Festival was made with glass fibre-reinforced polymer with a special silver coating.

Aduatz’s fascination with the aggregate phases of materials – that they can be solid, fluid or gaseous, though not at the same time – led him to experimenting with ways in which to blur these borders. It’s only in the transition phase that more than one material state can be occupied and that’s what Aduatz depicts with the Melting Chair, a fleeting moment turned into a useable object.

Working to create a realistic illusion, Aduatz studied the solidification of fluids and the melting of solids with 3D animation software. With this knowledge he created the surface of the Melting Chair down to the finest detail.

The perfect geometry of the Melting Chair was achieved through form studies with CNC milled polystyrene models and rapid prototyping.

A special mirror coating to the surface of the chair gives it a metallic appearance while a special clear lacquer is used to protect the mirror coating from ageing. The lacquer also makes the surface of the Melting Chair scratch resistant.