Well proven chair by James Shaw and Marjan va Aubel

Published on September 26, 2012

Work made by with Marjan van Aubel and James Shaw. They have been developing an exciting new material from waste wood. The project has been a collaboration between the RCA and the American Hardwood Export Council. They have also been helped along by Benchmark Furniture who kindly let them spend a week in their factory as well as craftsmen geniuses Sebastian Cox, Liam Treanor, Mike Bradley and Will Reed. The chairs produced during the project will be some of the first pieces of furniture subjected to Life Cycle Analysis (LCA) an important tool for measuring and comparing environmental impacts of manufactured goods.

The Well Proven Chair began with the discovery that within industry between 50-80% waste is created in processing raw timber into usable products. They decided to try and make a new material from this waste that usually comes in the form of sawdust, shavings or chippings. They discovered a bizarre reaction between this wood waste and bio-resin where the mixture expands up to five times its original volume into a strong, lightweight foamed material. They created a chair that uses this material as a seat shell, displaying the material’s natural exuberance which is complemented by the restrained and minimal turned ash legs.

The project has been launched at the Victoria and Albert Museum in London September 2012.

James Shaw & Marjan va Aubel

Filmed by Wai Ming Ng


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