The Industrial Upholstery standard office side chair seems modestly comfortable, stable, even conventional in shape (in spite of the organic stone-like appearance of the back and the candy colors). However, chair designer Gilli Kuchik of Bakery Studios, Tel Aviv, Israel, was aiming for something more radical—a new upholstery technique that uses fabric without a frame to form the seating surface. Kuchik used neoprene (typically used for diving gear) stitched with channels into which she injected polyurethane foam. When hardened, the foam and fabric create the chair’s shape.
In early prototypes, polyurethane seeped from the seams, and “we had a long and exhausting journey of endless tests,” says Kuchik, until a successful combination of materials emerged. “The final result is a very specific combination of neoprene type, the neoprene laminated fabric, polyurethane temperature, type of stitch and thread.” The Industrial Upholstery technique uses two kinds of polyurethane: high density for the frame and foam for user comfort. Kuchik designed with mass production in mind. “All that is left for us to do is to give it the freedom to express itself,” she says. Paradigma Design Gallery, Tel Aviv, exhibited Kuchik’s design and many other futuristic furniture ideas in summer 2010.