Six chairs from Milan 2010

Alejandro Aravena, Tokujin Yoshioko, Patricia Urquiola, Marcel Wanders, Thomas Heatherwick and François Azambourg take a seat.

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Of all the attributes of “chair”, the only one translatable to Alejandro Aravena’s Chairless is the verb “to sit”. Simply a robust fabric strap, when wrapped around the back and knees, the body is stablised and tension relieved. Designed for Vitra, Chairless was inspired by a sitting strap commonly used by the Ayoreo Indians, a nomadic tribe living in the border region between Paraguay and Bolivia. Website:

According to Tokujin Yoshioko: "Memory is a seat that completes its own design by changing shape.” He’s talking about his newest chair for Moroso. Featuring a unique technical covering, comprising cotton with an aluminium core, the chair can take on any form. With such hands-on mutability of its appearance, the chair echoes the gestures and interventions of the sitter like tin foil. Website:

Patricia Urquiola’s simple wooden armchair Klara for Moroso is, well, disarming. Drawing on the harmonious linear aesthetic of early 20th century design, the chair encourages one to fill in the missing topology by habit. Only on second glance does one notice how the non-essential has been boiled down to zero – never at the expense of comfort though. Website:

Quite literally a giant inflated water bottle, Marcel Wanders’s Sparkling chair was not commissioned by Coca-Cola, but by Magis. The chair is made through the same blow-moulding technique used to manufacture PET water bottles. After the moulding process, the hollow spaces are filled with high pressure air to strengthen the design. Says Wanders: “Mankind will find its future floating on the breath of little children.” Website:

More than simply a twist on the conventional furniture staple, Thomas Heatherwick’s Spun Chair is a complete 360° rotation. A majestic sculptural figure when upright, when tilted to the side, the playful possibilities of its spinning-top qualities come to light. Although Heatherwick has previously shown metal versions, the Magis edition is made from rotational moulded polyethylene. Website:

The tripod Petite Gigue Chair by François Azambourg for Moustache is much more stable than it looks – and it might float well too. Drawing on a marine construction technique used on light centreboard boats, manufacturing the chair requires both joinery and shipbuilding competencies. Besides, adds Moustache, the chair’s stability is reinforced by the two legs of its user, which makes it a five-legged chair. Website:

Watch the Talk with Alejandro Aravena