Tree, Tree 17
I-191 side chair
I-192 side chair
Beech – Soap
Oak – Beeswax
Walnut – Beeswax
Fabric upholstered / Leather upholstered
The chair Tree was designed by eliminating all decorative elements. It was made by excluding
every unnecessary element in its structure and design. The width and depth of the seat, as well
as the width and height of the backboard were defined to achieve a durable and balanced size for
long-term usage, while keeping the size compact and minimal. The chair was made as simple as
possible. A solid wood piece of lumber was bent and carved to form the required, curved backboard,
to provide a sense of unity with the back posts. In order to maintain the thinness of the seat while
providing proper cushioning, a Dymetrol seating with superb elasticity was used, and then it was
covered with fabric. Weight was reduced by eliminating unnecessary parts from the seat rails, which
comprise the seat. This simple, portable, and stable chair can be single-handedly carried by women
or elderly people. The expression of the large solid-wood backboard enhances the texture of the
chair, resulting in the creation of a unique presence.
15 years after first production of Tree, the chair has maintained its freshness as a universal presence
without changing any elements. Some elements from Japanese shrines and wooden architectures
are included in the simple construction of the chair. The Japanese aesthetic of subtraction is
expressed in this chair with minimum decoration. In terms of required strength to survive rough
handling in everyday use, it has something common with small Japanese wooden architectures.
The structure of the beautiful wooden architectures consists of simple composition and joints, while
taking advantage of the characteristics of wood.
Our aim was the creation of a Japanese chair, which can be placed in and naturally blends into
Japanese living spaces as well as modern spaces. We pursued a simple chair, possessing modern
Japanese elements and a universal presence.
The basic elements of Tree 17 are the same as Tree, such as the basic design and size. The difference
is the edge with a moderately curved surface, which extends from the top of the backboard to the
back posts and back legs.
Most chairs today are produced based on the European concept. However, chairs spontaneously
originated in various countries. With a theme of “Japanese chair”, as well as simplicity, neatness,
quietness, universality, and dignity, we pursued how to achieve quietness and dignity in a simple
structure, while simply achieving the functional elements of chairs. We will continue to examine the
theme of a simple chair with a Japanese appearance and attractiveness. Materials, structure, and
fine details become more important when things get simpler. For this chair, we focused on the angle
of the back legs, the angle and location of the back posts, and the balance between the overall and
backboard volumes. The round chamfering of the back corners enhances the soft and gentle texture
of solid wood in total.
The edge chamfering is the only difference in the shape of the backboard and back posts of Tree and
Tree 17. It appears to be a slight difference at first glance, but significantly changes the presence and
appearance of the entire chair. The solid, edgy, sharp and rustic appearance of Tree, and the softertextured,
simple presence of Tree 17: the difference between them represents the importance of
small details, as it can alter the presence of the chair.