December 1, 2010
Luca Nichetto’s new stacking chair may be the first-ever furnishing inspired by kissing robots.
HEIGHT: 30.3 inches
SEAT HEIGHT: 17.7 inches
WIDTH: 22.4 inches
Depth: 20.9 inches
Designers, perhaps to satisfy the journalists who write about them, often cite many influences. But Luca Nichetto may be the first to claim inspiration from a pop video—Björk’s “All Is Full of Love,” a 1999 clip in which the Icelandic singer appears as a robot and, in a moment worthy of Jacques Lacan, proceeds to make out with her twin. Aside from sparking countless erotic fantasies around the globe, the video moved Nichetto to design a stacking chair for Offecct composed, like Björk’s humanoid form, of components with exposed joints. Since the structure allows Robo to be shipped flat-packed, it also meets the Swedish company’s stringent sustainability standards.
The choice of materials further underscores Offecct’s commitment to the environment. At first, Nichetto intended to draw from Scandinavian tradition and construct the chair from plywood wrapped around a metal frame; Offecct, however, thought to supplement the wood with a compressed textile made of recycled plastic bottles. (The plywood-textile composite also turned out to be the winning option in terms of cost.) The collaborative process thrilled the Italian designer, who says he relishes finding unexpected solutions to technical problems. “I want intrigue. I want to discover new materials and understand everything that is possible.” Here he tells the engineering story behind his Robo chair, available in white and black.