Stephan Seifert-Echape Stool

At Design Interviews

Interview with Stephan Seifert : Frank Scott: What is the main principle, idea and inspiration behind your design?. Stephan Seifert : During the intitial investigation we saw in one of the gestures the leg of dancer. We decided to work with this as it gave a large volume of gestural aesthetic lines for what usually is quite a static object. .Frank Scott: What has been your main focus in designing this work? Especially what did you want to achieve?. Stephan Seifert : The main focus was to find a visual language that would allow the Thelos design language to shine through. Thelos prides itself in sculptural pieces that show of the furniture making craft, whilst remaining highly functional and beautiful pieces. .Frank Scott: What are your future plans for this award winning design?. Stephan Seifert : The future plans would be to develop some companion pieces, such as high table for the high stool, that will enhance the sculptural qualities of the stools. .Frank Scott: How long did it take you to design this particular concept?. Stephan Seifert : Between the design concept and final manufacturing files, there would hve been 3-4 month time frame. .Frank Scott: Why did you design this particular concept? Was this design commissioned or did you decide to pursuit an inspiration?. Stephan Seifert : Thelos gave us a very open brief. We were asked to design a stool using the Thelos design language. During the initial exploration we decided to develop the idea of dance that we had discovered during sketching. This gave us a strong sculptural, aestetic and rich cultural language to draw upon during the development of the concept. It also allowed us to introduce sinous scultural lines into what is generally cold and impersonal designs. .Frank Scott: Is your design being produced or used by another company, or do you plan to sell or lease the production rights or do you intent to produce your work yourself?. Stephan Seifert : The design is currently produced by the company Thelos based in Barcelona .Frank Scott: What made you design this particular type of work?. Stephan Seifert : Thelos's design philosophy allowed me to explore personality, sculptural and expressive lines, that allows a design object to get some personality. In designing echape we were not focused on follwoing any trends. We wanted to infuse some personality into the design. .Frank Scott: Where there any other designs and/or designers that helped the influence the design of your work?. Stephan Seifert : Of course. My design influences come from many varied fields, from the architecture of Gaudi of my adopted home here in Barcelona, but also from the Nordic Design traditions as well as meaning imbued design of Maori carving. .Frank Scott: Who is the target customer for his design?. Stephan Seifert : Designed for bar and lounge areas of hotels, resorts and private residences, the Echape family of stools invites interaction, conversation. It's design conveys the freedom, energy and spark that should be present in these spaces. .Frank Scott: What sets this design apart from other similar or resembling concepts?. Stephan Seifert : I think this design has a well defined personality. I think in recent years design has become very politically correct, ending up with designs that in some ways lack personality. We have stoped making manifiestos and statements with our designs. .Frank Scott: How did you come up with the name for this design? What does it mean?. Stephan Seifert : Echape is both a position in ballet, and also means escape in French. Since stools are usually in bars and lounges, places where we "escape" the stresses of daily life it seemed like a good conotation. .Frank Scott: Which design tools did you use when you were working on this project?. Stephan Seifert : The usual design process of investigation, sketching, 3D modelling and physical modelling were used to design and refine the stools. .Frank Scott: What is the most unique aspect of your design?. Stephan Seifert : I think the most unique aspect of design is the story of the design in junction with traditional craft, sculptural shape and high technology. .Frank Scott: Who did you collaborate with for this design? Did you work with people with technical / specialized skills?. Stephan Seifert : I collaborated closely with the Thelos technical team to ensure the technical feasability of the design. .Frank Scott: What is the role of technology in this particular design?. Stephan Seifert : Both 3D design software and CNC 5 axis milling is being used to help manufcture the design. As usual with furniture it will still be finished with traditional craft skills, in this case with the added vlue of it being completely ecological glues and sustainable wood used in the production. .Frank Scott: Is your design influenced by data or analytical research in any way? What kind of research did you conduct for making this design?. Stephan Seifert : The design was more influenced by the need to create a unique vision of a new design than by data driven research. .Frank Scott: What are some of the challenges you faced during the design/realization of your concept?. Stephan Seifert : I enjoyed learning more about working with wood, especially solid ecologically grown woods as are being used by Thelos. .Frank Scott: How did you decide to submit your design to an international design competition?. Stephan Seifert : Thelos decided to submit my design to the competition, for which I am very grateful! :) .Frank Scott: What did you learn or how did you improve yourself during the designing of this work?. Stephan Seifert : It was great to be allowed to fully explore a creative vision in such a scultural way. Also I enjoyed resolving the technical and constructive issues that resulted from pushing wood to it's limits. .Frank Scott: Any other things you would like to cover that have not been covered in these questions?. Stephan Seifert : I'd also like to thank my partner Júlia, whose continuing passion for ballet had a strong influence on both the research and who chose the final name. .

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