Pray what are you, or would you want to be a collector of? There are collectors of stones, collector of vases, collector of toys. I would be a collector of chairs. Chairs are like pens, jars, or spoons—Essential Home Things—only they do take up such a lot of space. And so I dream. The chairs from Atomi particularly are in my wishlist. Specialist in Japanese lifestyle design products, Atomi is a treasure trove of precious, crafted products big and small. We have talked about their linen from Fog Linen Work before. Now I want to highlight about some of their wondrous seats from a brand they carry. Maruni Wood Industry was established in 1928 as Showas Bentwood Factory and started out building structures such as Shinto shrines and private homes. In 1933, the focus changed to furniture and through research and experimentation, Maruni became an expert at the industrial application of craft techniques to traditional Japanese methods of making furniture.
Here are three products I adore:
Designed by Naoto Fukasawa, Roundish comes in a variety of forms, originating from a dining chair. We like the cuddly armchair, whose body wraps around the user and whose frame holds up the seat body like tree twigs. Gentle grey or strong blue upholstery—doesn’t matter. The chair’s shape conjures up the most delectable image of a very satisfying session of repose.
Jasper Morrison’s T Chair, released this year, makes the most elegant composition of solid maple wood and metal. A bent piece of coloured, powder-coated steel joins the wooden seat and backrest, its slight flexibility enhancing comfort for the user. The shape is simple and familiar but the mix of materials and colour tones in this particular composition is refreshing. There is also a stool version with corresponding coloured leg rests.
A trace of a bunny is found in the form of the Armless Chair designed by one of my design heroes SANAA. The Armless Chair emerged from the nextmaruni project, which was initiated in 2004, inviting 12 international designers to create chairs that enter into new dialogue with “Japanese culture”. Best thing—it also comes in ‘mini’ and ‘minimini’ sizes. Maybe you can’t buy a building designed by Kazuyo Sejima and Ryue Nishizawa but you can most definitely own a piece of their genius with Armless.
Note: (Thinking About) is a new Inventory segment that features an edit of products based on a brand or theme. Not limited to only new products, it is also an avenue to point out design classics and luminaries. It’s also snippety for your quick online viewing and reference.
Also, two purveyors of good design, Atomi and Kids 21 (a Club 21 boutique) have come together with a collaboration. From now, you can find a selection of Atomi’s sustainable products for kids in the fashion boutique in Forum The Shopping Mall, which include furniture, tableware and wooden toys—just in time for Christmas gift shopping.
+ photo credit: images courtesy of Atomi