It’s probably fair to say that no object at IMM Cologne 2018 confused us quite as much as the new 118 chair by Sebastian Herkner for Thonet.

Not in bad way. Just in a confused way.

We know, we know, what sort of being gets confused by chairs.

Us. Regularly. It’s why our lives’ are such a mess.

118 by Sebastian Herkner for Thonet, as seen at IMM Cologne 2018

As we’ve oft noted in these pages, not only have designers since time immemorial had a particular fascination for chairs, but society a particular predilection.

Arguably the two are related and can be traced to the long, universal, cultural, political and social relevance of the chair and the act of sitting, a state of affairs which not only makes the physical chair/seat an integral part of our lives, but the metaphorical: excitement brings us to edge of our chairs, those who are brave/foolish enough place themself in the hot seat, while we either sit in judgement or on the fence depending on what prudence and prejudice advise.

And so following on from our Cupboards, Closets, Wardrobes Playlist, a Radio smow Chairs Playlist, starting with five songs which discuss the action, symbolism and relevance of chairs/sitting in various contexts. Considerations on which can keep us occupied for hours.

No, honest…..

radio smow chairs playlist

Although the evidence is not, yet, conclusive, recent years have seen an increasing confidence in the theory that sitting for too long can have a negative impact on health, and that all whose job involves prolonged sitting should regularly stand, move and generally change their body position.

But what about those workers who can’t? What about those workers whose job is defined by long periods of sitting?

Orchestra musicians at work. Seated. Specifically, the Chicago Symphony Orchestra with Riccardo Muti at the Elbphilharmonie Hamburg, January 2017 (Photo © Todd Rosenberg, Courtesy Elbphilharmonie Hamburg)

Amongst all the fake flavours at Ambiente Frankfurt 2017 the Umami of Japanese design studio Bouillon was a genuine delight.

Cosmetic Surgery Kingdom-Bora Hong@Keum Art Projects, Location Partner: Gallery VOLUME Berlin

For the 13th century Dominican friar Thomas Aquinas beauty required a perfect combination of integritas, consonantia & claritas – integrity,

The 360° Stool by Konstantin Grcic for Magis (2009) and the Nelson Perch by George Nelson through Vitra (1964)

On March 10th 2015 a jury at the Central District Court of California in Los Angeles concluded that Pharrell Williams

For us one of the few genuine joys of Milan Design Week is observing visitors to the furniture fair perching

Van stoelen bezeten Gorcums Museum

As many of you will be aware, back in November we struggled to find five design exhibitions opening in December

Sitzen Liegen Schaukeln Möbel von Thonet Grassi Museum für Angewandte Kunst Leipzig

Standing in the Leipzig Grassi Museum for Applied Arts, surrounded by 150 years of Thonet chair history, Peter Thonet, x-times-great