Biomimetic Chair

Ai Weiwei
Monumental Junkyard, 2006
each 210 x 80 cm

Ai weiwei monumental junkjard

Marble Chair, 2008
125 x 52 x 50 cm

Ai weiwei marble chair

“The marble chair is made from a solid piece of a stone into a chair, into something which ironically overthrew the idea of the wooden classic chair. The work as one piece is strongly against its own form, its own way of structure. In the kind of making it really dismisses its own meaning. I enjoy that part.” – Ai Weiwei –

Joris Laarman
Bone Chair

joris laarman bone chair

Joris Laarman’s Bone chair takes its inspiration from the efficient way that bones grow (adding material where strength is needed and taking away material where it’s unnecessary). Made using a digital tool developed by GM that copies these methods of construction, Laarman says the ironic result of his biomimetic technique is “an almost historic elegancy” that is “far more efficient compared to modern geometric shapes.”

If evolution could create a chair…
Trees have the ability to add material where strength it is needed. But bones also have the ability to take away material where it is not needed. With this knowledge the International Development Centre Adam Opel GmbH, a part of General Motors Engineering Europe created a dynamic digital tool to copy these ways of constructing used for optimizing car parts. In a way it quite precisely copies the way evolution constructs. I didn’t use it to create the next worlds perfect chair but as a high tech sculpting tool to create elegant shape with a kind of legitimacy. The chair is the first in a series and the process can be applied to any scale until architectural sizes in any material strength…

credits to: Prof. Dr. Mattheck, Forschungszentrum Karlsruhe and Gravotech B.V.