Species: Silver birch (Russia), European beech and oak (Germany)
An open brief was given to Jasper Morrison for his first collaboration with Isokon: to look at our archive, our manufacturing capabilities and expertise and design something that feels at home with the brand. With the original Isokon logo in mind alongside Gerald Summers’ Bent Plywood chair with its single flowing plywood surface and Rietveldt’s Zig-Zag chair; Jasper Morrison’s design of the Iso-Lounge started life as a single sketch where the hand flowed from the back of the seat to the floor. Plywood was the only choice of material to follow the curve of the cantilevered design. The cantilever chair relies on a highly technical production to create balance and support, especially when produced in ply veneer. More than four complete prototypes, alongside many prototype sections were made over the course of a year to create a piece that offered total support and maximised comfort. Where it needed to be strong there are more layers and where it doesn't need to be as strong and it needs to flex, there are less layers – the chair has been honed to be incredibly responsive. The orientation of the veneer layers and their thickness was played with over many month. This was a very technical process that pushed the plywood to its limits. It took an incredible amount of collaboration, testing and prototyping to achieve this cutting-edge design - there are not many materials that could achieve a practical result. The very simple basis of an idea has been executed it as purely as possible. The chair is constructed from a single pressing. This pressing consists of 16 layers of veneer. Integral to the chair is the tapering seat and its delicately curved back. The tapering is created by machining the individual layers to a feather edge.