To celebrate the fifteenth anniversary of Milan’s SaloneSatellite, this year its organisers invited fifteen international designers who presented their designs under the theme of ‘Design<->Technology’. Among the the exhibiting designers, all of whom were either former or current participants in the Satellite, was the award-winning Swedish designer Staffan Holm who showcased this delicate, bentwood chair. Inspired by nature, the aptly-named ‘Branch’ was created with the use of complex wood bending technology, Compwood.
More about the design:
‘Inspired by the way that branches attach to a tree trunk, this chair is made out of bent solid wood. The technology behind bending wood this extreme is called Compwood, a method where heated wood is being compressed lengthwise making the fibers very flexible and bendable. Don’t be lured by the simple expression of Branch chair. This is one of the most technically challenging wood chairs ever made.’
More about the compressing process:
‘Compressed bendable hardwood is produced and used in the following way: Up to 3000 mm long and 80 x 120 mm cross section, sawn and planed planks of hardwood are heated and plastified and then compressed approximately 80% of the original length in a hydraulic compression machine. All axial fibre cell walls have been cross folded and the solid wood can be bent. The compressed planks can be either stored cold or worked with right away. The traditional steam bending technique demands instant bending of the wood while it is still hot. Compressed wood, however, does not need to be heated before bending, which provides with the possibility to execute the bending right on the spot. On the pictures below you can see how the structure of the wood is changed during the compressing process.’
for more information on the process visit Compwood products