Task ori­ented

Bar­beros­gerby’s ‘Pa­cific’ of­fice chair is shap­ing up to be the per­fect seat for ev­ery bot­tom line.

Belle - - Who R I Ght Now -

AS ONE OF THE UK’S best-known de­sign stu­dios, Bar­beros­gerby (com­pris­ing Ed­ward Bar­ber and Jay Os­gerby) have de­signed ev­ery­thing from a coathanger for Levi’s to ce­ramic tiles for Stella Mccart­ney and the torch for the 2012 Lon­don Olympic Games. Vis­it­ing Syd­ney last year to show their new ‘Pa­cific’ of­fice chair for Vi­tra, Bar­ber said de­sign­ing it was not an easy task. “We wanted to cre­ate some­thing el­e­gant and stripped down. We’ve never done a fur­ni­ture de­sign as com­plex as this,” he says of the chair that has about 140 parts.

Vi­tra was af­ter an orig­i­nal ap­proach when they com­mis­sioned Bar­beros­gerby about four years ago. “There are thou­sands of of­fice chairs on the mar­ket and all of them have their own unique sell­ing point. This spe­cial ‘thing’ is usu­ally fo­cused on a func­tion so we de­cided to base ours on a unique aes­thetic that cre­ates vis­ual calm in the work­place,” says Bar­ber. The ‘Pa­cific’ chair has a longer back than usual which hides the con­trols and has a spe­cial sen­sor buried deep within the seat that au­to­mat­i­cally ad­justs for height and weight vari­a­tions. “In to­day’s of­fice where co-work­ing is the norm, most chairs are shared so flex­i­bil­ity for users is a must,” he says.

“Vi­tra was very keen to get us onto this project be­cause of the unique qual­i­ties we brought to bear in our ‘Tip Ton’ chair de­sign from 2011. It re­ally was an en­tirely new con­cept in a deeply sat­u­rated mar­ket and they hoped we could do the same with an of­fice chair,” says the de­signer.

The ver­dict is still out on whether the ‘Pa­cific’ chair is des­tined for classic sta­tus but early signs have been pos­i­tive with the first large order go­ing to the new Ap­ple head­quar­ters in Cu­per­tino – 12,000 of them to be pre­cise. The de­ci­sion by the build­ing’s ar­chi­tects, Fos­ter + Part­ners, to spec­ify the chair was very much driven by how its sim­plic­ity leads to a vis­ually or­derly work space while avoid­ing a cor­po­rate feel­ing.

“When we did our re­search into ex­ist­ing task chairs the only ones we liked were from the 50s through to the 70s such as the ‘Kevi’ chair, the Eames Alu­minium Group and the ‘Sup­porto’ chair by Fred­er­ick Scott. We kept ask­ing, ‘why is that?’ The an­swer is prob­a­bly down to the fact that they were all beau­ti­fully sim­ple,” says Bar­ber.

While the ‘Pa­cific’ chair of­fers all the gad­gets found in a high-spec of­fice chair, the form gives away sub­tle hints of Bar­beros­gerby DNA such as the beau­ti­ful cast alu­minium arms and base. Ma­te­ri­als were cho­sen for longevity while up­hol­stery choices were se­lected for their muted, calm pal­ette.

“Af­ter in­vest­ing four years in a project like this you want to be re­ally happy with the out­come and feel you have cre­ated some­thing use­ful, com­fort­able and orig­i­nal,” says Bar­ber.

The Vi­tra ‘Pa­cific’ chair is avail­able at Space and Liv­ing Edge. bar­beros­gerby.com; space­fur­ni­ture.com.au; livingedge.com.au

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.