Spun, sitting on a spinning top. Heatherwick Studio for Magis
Published on February 14, 2019
After extensive research and experimentation, Heatherwick Studio produced an ergonomic form that works as a chair, whichever way it is rotated. To achieve this in a single form, the seat had to be capable of serving as a back support and the back support had to make a comfortable seat.
The process of metal spinning is traditionally used to make circular metal objects, such as timpani drums and gas cylinders, by pressing flat sheets of metal against a shaped former while they both rotate. If it was possible to make large drums with spun metal, might it be possible to make a chair with a completely symmetrical rotational form? And would it be comfortable to sit in?
At college, Heatherwick had been taught by a silversmith, skilled in using big sheets of silver to make large goblets and trophies. Working with the gallery, Haunch of Venison, Heatherwick Studio used the traditional craft of large-scale metal spinning to produce a series of highly finished pieces in different metals.
Project Leader: Stuart Wood
Team: Mark Burrows, Jonathan Sturgess, Jordan Tobin
Talking with Alberto Perazza (Co-Managing Director of Magis) and Thomas Heatherwick.