Cutting edge aims to be exactly that: a high-end piece of furniture using high-tech design.
The sofa is carved from a block of polymer material using electric hotwires. The idea is based on the foam-cutting technique that is unfortunately most widely known for providing many design-studio interns a lifelong trauma.
Generally, the technique is focussed on creating very regulated shapes and forms by controlling all parameters strictly, like temperature, movement and cutting along a linear path.
This technique offered the opportunity to explore a new process to experiment with the great three dimensional potential it has.
Providing the machine, a range of silhouettes (front, seating, back, bottom) and a rectangular block of expanded polystyrene, the user is able to compose the blueprint for their own tailor-made sofa.
The example here shows the result of a square wooden frame with a set of wires that can be adjusted to suit individual wishes – helping to blur the distinction between designer and user.
Every intuitive movement of the user is directly translated into shape. Each new formation of the electric wires results, very directly, in a unique sofa with a made-to-measure shape.
As the wires carve through the EPS block, they heat small areas of the polymer. When the wires are moved, at about 5 mm each time, these heated, expanded areas form ridges, which give the sofa its unique appeal. It looks a little like it has been put together slice by slice, though the reality is the opposite.
More information and images via the designer’s website.