Steelcase : SILQ

There is more than 100 years, the American brand Steelcase made its appearance on the market of the furniture and the tertiary organization with a lit fireproof basket! A creation as discreet as it is innovative, and finally a creative daring that has become the company's red thread - now the world leader in the professional furniture sector - like SILQ, his last office chair.

"Ten years ago, we wanted to offer an alternative to the traditional design of office chairs. (...) But this has only been possible recently, thanks to the invention of a material developed by Steelcase ", book James Ludwig, architect and designer, responsible for the development of SILQ - among others - who integrated the brand into 1999, having been one of its service providers for several years. A double hat that offers him today a global vision of the problems inherent in each of these two specialties. "What did I learn in industrial design school? How to do things. What did I learn in architecture school? How to think of them », he adds.


Thanks to this new material developed by the company, more than the touch or the lightness, it is the whole system, the very structure of the object, which changes. No more than the hundred or so mechanisms that usually make up this type of high-performance seat, these are here replaced by a single polymer material - the patenting of which is in progress - inspired by the properties of carbon fiber but less expensive. , in order to make innovation accessible. Technique and aesthetics then form a whole. When technological simplification is at the service of formal sobriety. "My ideal chair? Intuitive, powerful and beautiful », synthesizes James Ludwig.

"We took inspiration from the aerospace industry, from the movement of a high-performance prosthetic leg, to understand how the combination of advanced materials and form could create a simple, incredibly thin, extremely robust and responsive system. " James Ludwig, Architect and Designer, Vice President of Global Design and Engineering at Steelcase

And as to make up for lost time imposed by a technological standby, it took only 18 months to a team in reduced staff - only five people in total - to develop the range SILQ, against 36 months on average for a professional chair. With its curves and intuitive settings, SILQ therefore adapts to different morphologies to try to be one with the body of its user, as summarized James Ludwig: "We wanted to design something that is closer to the body than the machine. "

Like the designers of the brand, interested parties will still have to show a little patience because the product will be available in France only in the fall!

To learn more, visit the Steelcase site

Photographs: DR

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