Iroko Concrete Chair

Natural resources have become a luxury in the design industry. Their rapid depletion have put designers through countless obstacles to form their stance on the complex relationship between design and the environment.

To counter this problem, rather than distancing themselves from the use of raw materials, Italian studio Andrea Tognon Architecture utilises minimalism to highlight them as a gesture of appreciation and almost a token of gratitude toward nature’s givings. With a simple cylindrical base of concrete, the monolithic Iroko Concrete Chair fortifies a brutalism that’s unseen in recent furniture design memories. The smooth finish of the cool grey surface and its pattern contradicts a certain gentleness of this architectural form.

The chair is touched with a horizontal indentation where two wooden panels reside as a backrest. The small gap between them cuts into the podium like a visual reflection, only in different planes. The point where these two materials meet create a starch contrast of colours and orientation, much like the axes of this sculptural design.

Besides the chair itself, I completely love the visual presentation for the Iroko Concrete Chair. By placing the product outdoor—bathed in sunlight, Andrea Tognon puts this product in its natural habitat where each material is individually brightened and wholly exposed to be awed.