Japanese design studio YOY, a Tokyo-based studio composed of Naoki Ono, a spatial designer, and Yuki Yamamoto, a product designer, intended to “create a new story between space and objects” at the Milan Design Week 2013 exhibition. The international design event featured YOY’s “canvas” chairs. On first look, the chair appears to be a two-dimensional canvas leaning against a wall, screen printed with an illustration of a chair. People sit on the leaning canvas, stretched with an elastic fabric rather than traditional canvas, and the users’ weight stretches the material to form an instant chair or stool (for one) or sofa (for two).
The hanging canvas frames are constructed of wood and aluminum, and a wooden bar is placed exactly where a user sits. An elastic fabric (similar to what is used for tights) screen printed with illustrations of a sofa, chair or stool is stretched tight over the frame, giving the appearance of a two-dimensional piece of artwork. A rubber surface on the part of the frame that touches the floor keeps the tilted canvas from slipping and dumping the user unceremoniously on the floor. The printed illustrations show old-fashioned, fussy Victorian-style furniture, providing an ironic twist to an interesting experience in art and home furnishing that blurs the distinction between the two.