Today’s interest in the outdoor lifestyle is even sweeping through furniture design. This can clearly be seen in furniture shows, with exhibitions or entire halls dedicated to the theme, and is corroborated by statistics, which show a growing number of terraces and garden areas in modern homes.

This renewed interest in outdoor furniture goes beyond familiar old garden chairs and tables, to include reinterpretations in an open air key of traditionally interior objects, such as lamps, for instance.

There are also many solutions that redefine – in terms of both design and materials – classic outdoor objects, to blur the distinction between indoors and outdoors. Some of the materials most commonly used include synthetic fibres instead of natural materials such as wicker and rattan, which usually necessitate additional manual processes.

For example, the cocooning Egg suspended chair, created fifty years ago by the Danish designer Nanna Ditzel, has been reinterpreted by Pierantonio Bonacina, in woven Polycore, an artificial fibre made from polyethylene.

The new Canasta series by Patricia Urquiola for B&B Italia, consisting of ample, wrap-round cradle-shaped chairs, is also inspired by a natural material – woven Viennese straw – while actually being made of vinyl strips hand-woven by wicker makers, whereas Rodolfo Dordoni uses string for the seat and back in his tubular steel framed chair in the Harp collection for Roda.

The article continues in Auto & Design no. 168

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