A chair was designed by Doshi Levien for Moroso. A mouldable wood material had very distinct visual and tactile properties. A thermoplastic composite used 80% wood fibre and 20% polypropylene and used conventional injection moulding machines. Moisture from the wood fibre which in turn burns on the surface of the aluminum tool was released by the pressure and heat from the mould. A random, leather-like tarnished effect was created.
Creating a contemporary chair that references the genre of light, graceful, bent wood frame chairs was inspired by the characteristics of this material, but would be impossible to make in any other way than by injection moulding. So, the name was “impossible wood”. The depth and texture of the material was the opposite of slick, homogenous, surface perfect plastic, currently used for most moulded chairs.
There was a used, worn, raw and earthy quality that was timeless and natural. Wood was smelled from it. The work of Martin Puryear, an African American sculptor who made a piece called Cedar Lodge in 1977 was seen. Using thin, overlapping parallel strips of timber, bound together with horizontal rings, constructed this installation. This informed the way we made our first prototypes for “Impossible wood”. An improvised and constructed language was adopted to escape the controlled and fluid process usually applied to generating plastic forms.
Salone launched the prototype for Impossible Wood and could be found at the Moroso stand. (Hall 16 Stand C23/D22)
Milan 2011: this injection-moulded wooden chair was presented by London studio Doshi Levien for Italian brand Moroso at the Salone Internazionale del Mobile in Milan next week. Called Impossible Wood, the chair design was made of a thermoplastic composite comprising 80% wood fibre and 20% polypropylene. Although perched on metal legs, the seat shell looked like made from strips of wood but in fact injection moulding formed the shape.
[ via ]