Furniture Design, Second Edition by Jim Postell

3256d272d757bcf.jpeg Author Jim Postell
Isbn 9781118090787
File size 38 Mb
Year 2012
Pages 12
Language English
File format PDF
Category design


ffirs.indd i 12/09/12 10:03 PM Furniture Design ffirs.indd i 12/09/12 10:03 PM FigureTI-1 Danish Institute for Study Abroad Furniture Design workshop. Drawing and sketching at full scale.  Photography: courtesy Erik Skoven, DIS. ffirs.indd ii 12/09/12 10:03 PM Furniture Design Second Edition Jim Postell JOHN WILEY & SONS, INC. ffirs.indd iii 12/09/12 10:03 PM Cover images: Left: reproduced by permission of Design  Construction Strategies Right: reproduced by permission of Integrated Environmental Solutions (IES) Cover design: Anne Michele Abbott This book is printed on acid-free paper. Copyright © 2012 by John Wiley & Sons, Inc. All rights reserved. Published by John Wiley & Sons, Inc., Hoboken, New Jersey. Published simultaneously in Canada. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording, scanning, or otherwise, except as permitted under Section 107 or 108 of the 1976 United States Copyright Act, without either the prior written permission of the Publisher, or authorization through payment of the appropriate per-copy fee to the Copyright Clearance Center, Inc., 222 Rosewood Drive, Danvers, MA 01923, 978-750-8400, fax 978-646-8600, or on the web at Requests to the Publisher for permission should be addressed to the Permissions Department, John Wiley & Sons, Inc., 111 River Street, Hoboken, NJ 07030, 201-748-6011, fax 201-748-6008, or online at Limit of Liability/Disclaimer of Warranty: While the publisher and author have used their best efforts in preparing this book, they make no representations or warranties with the respect to the accuracy or completeness of the contents of this book and specifically disclaim any implied warranties of merchantability or fitness for a particular purpose. No warranty may be created or extended by sales representatives or written sales materials. The advice and strategies contained herein may not be suitable for your situation. You should consult with a professional where appropriate. Neither the publisher nor the author shall be liable for damages arising herefrom. For general information on our other products and services, or technical support, please contact our Customer Care Department within the United States at 800-762-2974, outside the United States at 317-572-3993 or fax 317-572-4002. Wiley publishes in a variety of print and electronic formats and by print-on-demand. Some material included with standard print versions of this book may not be included in e-books or in print-on-demand. If this book refers to media such as a CD or DVD that is not included in the version you purchased, you may download this material at For more information about Wiley products, visit our Web site at Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data: Postell, James Christopher, 1958Furniture design / Jim Postell. — Second edition. pages cm Includes bibliographical references and index. ISBN 978-1-118-09078-7 (cloth); 978-1-118-35170-3 (ebk.); 978-1-118-35171-0 (ebk.); 978-1-118-35315-8 (ebk.); 978-1-118-35316-5 (ebk.); 978-1-118-35318-9 (ebk.) 1. Furniture design. I. Title. NK2260.P67 2012 749—dc23 2012002907 978-1-118-09078-7 Printed in the United States of America 10 9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1 ffirs.indd iv 12/09/12 10:03 PM Contents Preface xiii Acknowledgments xvii Foreword xix Foreword to the First Edition chapter  xxi 1 Introduction to Furniture Design 1 Furniture 2 Design 8 Furniture  Design  (X)  Furniture Design 10 Data Visualization: Mapping Data from Research chapter  12 2 Function and Social Use Human Body Supports 19 20 Sitting, Working, Resting, and Sleeping Squatting and Sitting 20 23 Activities: Eating, Reading, Typing, and Writing Containing: Storing, Displaying, and Organizing 25 27 Defining Space: Enclosing, Shaping, and Partitioning Classifications Based on Social Use 28 29 Health-care Furniture: For Those Who Need Assistance 30 Hospitality Furniture: Restaurants, Lobbies, and Reception Areas Institutional Furniture: Education 32 34 Multifunctional Furniture: Sit-Work, Sit-Sleep, and Store-Display 35 Office Furniture: Ergonomic Seating, Workstations, and Systems Furniture 37 Recreational Furniture: Play, Leisure, and Outdoor Furnishings 38 v ftoc.indd v 10/09/12 11:20 PM Religious (Liturgical) Furniture: Altars, Arks, and Minbars 40 Residential Furniture: Social Gathering, Resting, Dining, and Organizing 43 Retail Furniture: Displaying, Storing, Transactions, and Sales Storage Furniture: Containing, Organizing, and Accessing chapter  3 Form 51 46 47 Form, Spatial Organization, and Typological Orders Angular 51 56 Composite 56 Curvilinear 57 Orthogonal 58 Sectional/Modular Spatial Organization Centralized Clustered 58 60 61 62 Grids 63 Linear 64 Radial 65 Typological Orders 66 Assembly Required (Ready-to-Assemble and Knock-Down) Built-In/Stationary Freestanding 66 67 67 Inflatable 68 Mechanical (Transformative Pieces) Movable Summary chapter  69 72 74 4 Furniture Case Studies 75 Overview of Furniture Case Studies 75 700–400 BCE Greek Klismos chair 1200–1800 CE European coffer 76 78 1745–1750 French Rococo commode 1754–1780 Chippendale chair 82 1855–1859 Café chair, Model No. 14 1917–1918 Red-Blue chair vi ftoc.indd vi 80 84 86 Contents 10/09/12 11:20 PM 88 1922 Blocs Screen 1925 Wassily club chair, Model No. B301 1928 Siège à Dossier Basculant (B301) 92 94 1932–1933 Stools 60/65 1949–1950 Eames Storage Unit (ESU) 96 98 1950–1954 Antony chair 100 1951 Wire side chair 102 1968 Action Office 104 1987 Ghost chair 106 1992 Cross Check armchair 108 1993 Trinidad chair 110 1994 Living units 1994–1995 Aeron chair 1999 The Block 114 2000 Pathways 116 2003–2004 Jimmy’s Buffet 112 118 120 2004 Knit chair 2006 Araneae coffee table 2011 Modular Vitrine System 122 124 Lessons from the 25 Furniture Case Studies chapter  90 126 5 Furniture Design Theory Inquiry 129 129 Systems Theory 131 Firmitas, Utilitas, and Venustas 133 Firmitas Utilitas 133 137 Anthropometrics 139 General Body Characteristics and Dimensions 142 Ergonomics Posture 145 Proxemics Venustas Beauty 141 147 150 150 Geometry 152 Proportion 152 Contents ftoc.indd vii vii 10/09/12 11:20 PM Modernism 154 Built Form and Culture 155 New Formalism: Theories of Digital Form chapter  Design 158 6 161 Design Principles 163 Balance: Structural and Visual, Symmetry and Asymmetry Continuity, Unity, and Variety Dynamism and Stasis 165 167 Rhythm and Pattern 167 Scale and Proportion Design Thinking 168 171 Construing and Constructing Bold Studies 172 172 Making Prototypes Scaled Models Design Ethos 165 165 Hierarchy and Emphasis Juxtaposition 163 174 175 177 Accessible Design 177 Codes, Guidelines, and Standards (Health, Safety, and Welfare) Green Design 178 Universal Design Design Processes 177 181 182 Schematics: Sketching, Drawing, Computer Rendering, and Model Making 182 Design Phases 190 Predesign, Research, and Programming Schematic Design 190 192 Design Development Fabrication Drawings 192 193 Pricing and Contract Negotiation 194 Shop Drawings, Templates, and Working Prototypes Fabrication 195 Delivery and Installation 196 Professional and Disciplinary Boundaries viii 195 197 Contents ftoc.indd viii 10/09/12 11:20 PM chapter  7 Materials 203 Material Matters 205 Material Properties 210 Absorptive Quality 211 Aging and Weathering 212 Cellular Structure (Open-Cell or Closed-Cell) Compressive and Tensile Strength Density 212 213 214 Dimensional Movement Ductility 214 216 Durability Elasticity 217 217 Expandability 217 Haptic Sensations Stability 218 219 Surface Qualities 220 Visual Aspects of Finished Wood Surfaces Visual Aspects of Unfinished Wood Surfaces Volatile Organic Compounds Workability Materials: A to Z 224 Composite Boards Fabrics and Leather 224 226 229 232 Glass 235 Metal 237 Paper 240 240 Rubber and Elastomers Stone 221 223 Adhesives and Glues Plastics 221 222 Other Aspects Finishes 220 245 247 Woods and Grasses 248 Contents ftoc.indd ix ix 10/09/12 11:20 PM chapter  8 Processes and Methods of Fabrication 255 Preparing Shop Drawings and a Materials Takeoff List 256 Securing Materials, Equipment, Supplies, and Hardware 257 Bending 260 Carving 262 Cutting, Drilling, Milling, and Planing Assembling and Gluing 263 264 Joinery, Mechanical Connections, and Fasteners Upholstery Sanding 265 275 277 Finishing, Painting, Sealing, Staining, and Surfacing Wood Finishing 278 Delivery and Installation 280 Repairing, Restoring, and Resurfacing A Chronological Overview of Tools Hand Tools 281 281 281 Machine Tools 282 Hand Tools Used Today 282 Power Tools Used Today 283 Digital Tools 285 Technology: The Art and Science of Fabrication Craft (Workmanship of Risk) 287 288 Machine Production (Workmanship of Certainty) chapter  9 Professional Practice and Marketing Industry 291 295 Retail and Wholesale Design for Less Alternative Retail 296 298 298 Industrial Entrepreneurs: Silent Heroes ftoc.indd x 289 294 Green Marketing x 278 300 Contents 10/09/12 11:20 PM Furniture Epicenters Paris 301 301 Northern Italy 301 Scandinavia 302 Other Epicenters 304 The Business of Furniture Design chapter  304 10 Historical Overview 307 How Societies Have Thought about Designing, Making, and Using Furniture 307 The Earliest Cultures 309 Ancient Nomadic Societies 309 Prehistoric World Settlements Prehistory to Antiquity Ancient Egypt 310 310 Archaic and Classical Greece Etruria 309 313 315 The Romans 315 Early Christian and Islamic Cultures 316 Emergence of Islamic Furniture (circa 610) Medieval Societies The Rise of Europe 317 319 321 The Renaissance Baroque Period 321 327 French Rococo Period 329 England in the Seventeenth and Eighteenth Centuries 331 The American Colonies and the Emerging United States 333 The Classical Style 336 The Industrial Revolution 337 Eclecticism 339 Revivals 339 Craft and Design 341 Arts and Crafts in Europe 342 Arts and Crafts in the United States Art Nouveau 343 345 Contents ftoc.indd xi xi 10/09/12 11:20 PM Modernism and the Machine Age The Bauhaus 346 348 Rising Heroes of Evolving Modernism Craft versus Design 356 New Craftsmanship 356 350 The Twenty-First Century: The Digital Age 358 New Digital Tools, New Synthetic Materials, New Design Opportunities Appendix: References and Sources Industry Sources 361 362 Museums, Galleries, and Exhibitions Glossary xii ftoc.indd xii 365 367 Bibliography Index 359 381 385 Contents 10/09/12 11:20 PM Preface ALVAR AALTO (1898–1976), Charles Rennie Mackintosh (1868–1928), and Frank Lloyd Wright (1867–1959) were architects who integrated custom furnishings into their buildings and interior spaces (Figure P-1). Interior designers such as Eileen Gray (1878–1976), Yoshiharu Hatano (b. 1946), Eva Maddox (b. 1944) and Andrée Putnam (b. 1925) are renowned for their skill in blending textures and furnishings with interior space. Henry Dreyfuss (1904–1972) and Bill Stumpf (1936–2006) were industrial designers who utilized industrial manufacturing processes in their furniture designs. Woodworkers and artisans such as Wendell Castle (b. 1932), Sam Maloof (1916–2009), George Nakashima (1905–1990), and Pierluigi Ghianda (b. 1926) worked throughout their lives to create furniture with remarkable handcraft and finish (Figure P-2). Charles (1907–1978) and Ray (1912–1988) Eames, Poul Kjærholm (1929–1980), Pierre Paulin (1927–2009), Charlotte Perriand (1903–1999), Gatano Pesce (b. 1939), and Hans J. Wegner (1914–2007) developed professional careers designing furniture. Regardless of their academic background or professional affiliation, these individuals are renowned for innovative furniture designs (Figure P-3). Consider the viewpoints brought to furniture design by these individuals and the unique disciplinary qualities within the fields of art, architecture, interior design, and industrial design. There are pronounced differences in the way architects and interior designers create a sense of place by designing, selecting, and locating furniture; in the way industrial designers seek to resolve industrial fabrication processes and integrate utility, human factors, and ergonomics in design; and in the way that artists are trained in their craft. Many individuals and disciplines to contribute to the body of knowledge of furniture design. Figure P-1 Experiments with bent and laminated wood—furniture components for the Paimio Sanatorium and the library in Viipuri, Finland. Designed by Alvar Aalto. Photography by Jim Postell, 2006. xiii fpref.indd xiii 12/09/12 10:04 PM Figure P-2 Three-seat settee, designed and fabricated by Wendell Castle (1968). Stacked-laminated, carved cherry wood. Photography by Jim Postell, 2011. Think about the influence that material properties, use, applied forces, the surrounding environment, and ergonomics have on furniture design. Reflect upon the historical, cultural, political, and societal conditions revealed in the way people sit, rest, work, and play, or the human factors research and anthropometric data on which furniture designers rely. Many factors should be considered when designing furniture. Most are situated within personal, cultural, disciplinary, and professional frames of reference. This second-edition textbook is written to serve students and furniture designers as a comprehensive survey and resource to give a deeper understanding and provide knowledge and inspiration for designing and making furniture. It has been rewritten to deliver a more extensive overview of furniture design through further documentation and analysis, with focus upon the stories and design intentions behind the furniture examples presented in this book. There are broader examples of furniture presented throughout the book, in-depth material specifications, and updated material covering digital design and fabrication technologies. The primary intention of this book is to articulate how ideas, use, design process, materials, and fabrication methods contribute to furniture design. This was a central theme in the first edition. This edition attempts to be more effective in achieving that goal. Revisions have been made to each of the 10 chapters, which include:  Figure P-3 Stacked Tongue 577 chairs, designed by Pierre Paulin (1967), tubular steel armature surrounded with rubber webbing and expanded foam, upholstered in polyester stretch fabric. Manufactured by Artifort. 33½ inches wide; 35½ inches deep; 24 inches high; 133/8 inches seat height (85 cm wide; 90 cm deep; 61 cm high; 34 cm seat height). Photography by Jim Postell, 2011. xiv fpref.indd xiv   Chapter 1, “Introduction to Furniture Design,” presents an expanded overview to the discipline and introduces threads of disciplinary-centered research and research methods. Basic relationships are outlined between furniture and design, setting the stage for a comprehensive and extensive survey. Chapter 2, “Function and Social Use,” describes social-use categories, notions of utility, ergonomics, and function. Chapter 3, “Form, Spatial Organization, and Typological Orders,” addresses a range of physical, compositional, and spatial characteristics in furniture design. Preface 12/09/12 10:04 PM        Chapter 4, “Furniture Case Studies,” presents 25 furniture studies organized in chronological order with new sustainable and digital design updates. In addition to the case studies, selected furniture projects by students highlight unique ways of thinking about furniture design, whose pedagogy and methodology were drawn from this book. Chapter 5, “Furniture Design Theory,” examines the nature of furniture design, focusing on aspects of comfort, performance, structural integrity and composition, how furniture works and feels, green design, and digital fabrication, and includes expanded discussion on human factors, ergonomics, and aesthetics. Chapter 6, “Design,” presents an overview of design principles and focuses on the phases, processes, tools, skills, and ethics of designing furniture. This edition introduces more designers, further examples of furniture pieces, and more specific working methods of design—including digital design technologies. Chapter 7, “Materials,” outlines an updated palette of natural, composite, and synthetic materials and discusses material properties and surface characteristics relative to furniture design. Chapter 8, “Processes and Methods of Fabrication,” discusses ways of fabricating furniture (beyond woodworking technologies), with an overview of hand, power, and digital tools. Chapter 9, “Professional Practice and Marketing,” covers professional aspects related to the marketing, branding, and business of designing, making, and selling furniture. Furniture companies are included as both a source and resource for the reader. Expanded content is given to economic forces, global markets, professional outlets, and venues, in which the public and the discipline interact. Chapter 10, “Historical Overview,” highlights how societies have thought about, designed, fabricated, and used furniture from ancient Egypt up to the present. Revised content has been added to include recent furniture designs produced or fabricated within the past 10 years. Designing furniture relies upon judgment, theory, and technical knowledge from several professions and disciplines. The breadth and depth of knowledge necessary to design, specify, select, fabricate, and arrange furniture in space is extensive. This book draws on this knowledge and, in doing so, reaches out to students, faculty, the general public, and professionals in allied fields of design. It remains a challenge for some individuals to acknowledge furniture design as a standalone profession or even as a vocation because it is intertwined with several disciplines. It is difficult to formulate a collective dialogue about furniture design because each discipline approaches design and fabrication from unique perspectives and each perspective is tethered to specific assumptions, frameworks, and agendas. Look back to the time when interior design was an emerging field and consider its historical beginnings. One can determine that interior design developed from several fields, the work of key individuals, unique professional practices, and established academic programs. The fields of architecture, design, fine arts, and the decorative arts, in conjunction with the professional practices of James Adam (1732–1794) and Robert Adam (1728–92), Elsie de Wolfe (1856–1950), and Florence Knoll (b. 1917) would deserve recognition for their contribution to the emergence of interior design as a discipline and emerging profession. In the 1950s, the discipline of industrial design began to emerge. The work of Norman Bel Geddes (1893–1958) and Raymond Loewy (1893–1986) helped to promote interest Preface fpref.indd xv xv 12/09/12 10:04 PM in the discipline, as did emerging industrial fabrication processes and new mass customization and digital fabrication technologies. It is important to acknowledge the collective influence architects, interior designers, industrial designers, and fine artists have had on the disciplinary and academic stature of furniture design, but one should also consider the important roles that entrepreneurs, fabricators, craftspeople, engineers, human factor researchers, and the general public have played as well. It is the author’s hope that this book will remain a useful survey for students and faculty, and continue to serve as a resource for designers and fabricators interested in furniture design. xvi fpref.indd xvi Preface 12/09/12 10:04 PM Acknowledgments MANY INDIVIDUALS CONTRIBUTED to the first edition of this book. To those who took time to discuss and comment on the manuscript drafts, contribute drawings or photographs, provide information, resources, ideas, and encouragement, I am sincerely grateful. For the past 25 years, I have taught in the School of Architecture and Interior Design within the College of Design, Architecture, Art, and Planning at the University of Cincinnati. DAAP is composed of many design disciplines and has a long history of cooperative practice providing students with professional internships in firms across the country and around the world. DAAP provides a design-centered, collaborative environment. To those students who have participated in my furniture design seminar at the university and in taking the course, have documented and analyzed, or designed and fabricated working prototypes of furniture, you have been a continued source of inspiration, knowledge, and joy for me as an educator. The numerous visits to galleries and museums that have furniture among their collections, here in the States and abroad, have been a significant resource for research. I am grateful to the Mingei International Museum in San Diego; the Metropolitan Museum of Art and MOMA in New York; the Cincinnati Art Museum; the Pompidou Center, Musée d’Arts Décoratifs, Musée du Louvre, and Musée D’Orsay in Paris; the Victoria and Albert Museum in London, and the Designmuseum Danmark in Copenhagen. The collective experiences viewing and studying furniture in a museum setting have contributed to a broader, research-based perspective about furniture and design. Furniture showrooms, design centers, and international furniture fairs continue to be important venues where one can see, touch, sit, meet with the owner or manager of a furniture company, and discuss what sells and learn why. Among the hundreds of showrooms visited over the past 20 years, Paustian in Copenhagen, M2L in NYC, the San Francisco Design Center, the Merchandise Mart in Chicago, Voltage in Cincinnati, Cassina’s showroom in Milan, and Kartell’s showroom in Helsinki are among the best. Furniture fairs including, Highpoint, NC, ICFF in New York, the Salone del Mobile di Milano, and NEOCON in Chicago are all important events to see and visit for anyone interested in furniture design. They continue to be an invaluable resource of contemporary furniture design, and the peripheral design-centered receptions, parties, and openings are excellent opportunities for those in the industry, designers, and clients to interact. Designing and making furniture over the past 30 years has yielded for me an inner sense of assurance on the subject. I am fortunate to have had the opportunity to design over 400 individual furniture pieces for architectural and interior commissions. Meeting and getting to know those who design furniture is invaluable. I am grateful to have known many furniture designers, including Erling Christoffersen, professor at DIS; Boris Berlin, co-owner of KOMPLOT Design, and Troels Grum-Schwensen in Copenhagen; xvii flast.indd xvii 10/09/12 11:09 PM Yoshiharu Hatano in Castelleto Ticino (Italy); Mario Bellini, Achille Castiglioni, and Ettore Sottsass, all of whom have had offices in Milan; and Emiliano Godoy of GODOYLAB in Mexico City. To those who have written about furniture design, I am particularly indebted, especially to Mark Hinchman, Anne Massey, John Pile, David Pye, and Edward Lucie Smith. To those companies that make furniture, including, B & B Italia, Cassina, Vitra, Giogetti, Fritz Hansen, Rud Rasmussen, and to those individuals who craft furniture, including Pierluigi Ghianda, Mario Terraneo, Soren Holst Pedersen of PP Mobler Design, and the late George Nakashima, you and your work have been sources of inspiration. To the readers of Furniture Design, it is a special satisfaction for me to introduce this second edition. I hope this book complements those books in the classroom and on your shelves and continues to inspire students and designers in their quest to better understand the comprehensive and extensive nature of designing and making furniture. I thank Paul Drougas, acquisitions editor at John Wiley & Sons, for the opportunity and encouragement to write a second edition of this book. This edition has provided an opportunity to make changes both substantial and marginal in response to suggestions from students, teachers, and designers who use the book. Shortly after John Pile agreed to write the foreword for the first edition of this book, he passed away. His books on the subjects of modern furniture and interior design are marked by their balance of technical information and thoughtful insight about design, supported by great images. John had a remarkable career as a teacher, author, and practitioner— always with focus on design. He contributed significantly to the study of furniture design and interior design and was influential in the development of this book. He was a source of inspiration, a mentor, and a supporter for the book. I wish to dedicate this edition in his honor. xviii Acknowledgments flast.indd xviii 10/09/12 11:09 PM

Author Jim Postell Isbn 9781118090787 File size 38 Mb Year 2012 Pages 12 Language English File format PDF Category Design Book Description: FacebookTwitterGoogle+TumblrDiggMySpaceShare A new edition of the most comprehensive book on the craft and business of furniture design, this essential studio companion covers history, theory, human factors and ergonomics, materials, tools and methods of fabrication, and professional practice issues. New and expanded coverage includes green design, materials and fabrication techniques, and digital fabrication. Featuring numerous photographs, drawings, and a new color section as well as 30 case studies of historical and contemporary works, Furniture Design is a must-have for the bookshelf of every furniture designer and aspiring professional.     Download (38 Mb) Spruce: A Step-by-Step Guide to Upholstery and Design Production Ergonomics: Designing Work Systems to Support Optimal Human Performance 1000 Quilt Inspirations Furniture Makes the Room: Create Special Pieces to Style a Home You Love Global Design History Load more posts

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