The first thing you notice about Setu by Studio 7.5 for Herman Miller is the resemblance to another product with which Herman Miller established their name as one of the world’s premium designer furniture producers: The Aluminium Chair by Charles and Ray Eames.
The important difference is that whereas with the aluminium chair the movement comes from a hinge between seat and base, with the Setu the movement comes from an innovative new approach to reclining mechanisms.
And whereas with a conventional office chair the reclining function comes from a hinge between base and seat, with the Setu the movement comes from an innovative new approach to reclining mechansisms.
In essence the reclining mechanism of Setu can be considered a spine; as the user leans back the spine moves with you and so supports your weight. The genius with Setu, however, is that the spine is built into the curvature between seat and backrest, i.e uses the natural curve of the Eames Aluminium Chair to create movement and improve comfort.
Perhaps a video can explain that much better…
In the Setu Evolution video, Burkhard Schmitz says “We tried to start with a clean slate and then find the form through the constraints”
Which means that the Aluminium Chair form is almost perfect.
By giving it flexibility Studio 7.5 have improved that form.
And that is part of good industrial design is.
You don’t always need to develop something new; it is often more important to refine and improve something that already exists.
Studio 7.5 have done that with a great deal of finesse… and that could just swing if for them.
Setu by Studio 7.5 for Herman Miller
Chances of winning the 2010 Brit Insurance Design Award: Very good