Mandi Keighran talks to Konstantin Grcic about Milan and his new ’Tom and Jerry’ range for Magis.
24 April, 2012
On the ‘Tom and Jerry’ range for Magis
“We are launching now this ‘Tom and Jerry’ family – a stool, a shelf and a table. It started with the stool, which is made of wood and is adjustable in height. In a way, it is kind of a redesign of something existing – a piano stool or a simple three-legged stool with a spindle to wind the seat. What we did was simply change the material of the spindle. It is traditionally made in metal – it is a complicated, mechanical part. We made it in plastic, which on one hand industrialises the process and makes it an industrial product in terms of it [being] faster and cheaper. But, also the material gave it an extra value because the plastic means the friction of the stool and the thread is smoother, it doesn’t jam. The plastic in a way solved it all.
The aesthetic is the happy side effect. It really came from our considerations about how to make that joint function. In other materials – metal or wood – it would involve a lot of labour.
A stool is not a chair. It’s more informal, it’s something more versatile. You could use a stool as a chair to sit at a table, having breakfast or you could use the stool as a small table. It could be the stool in a kid’s room, in a shop, in a bar or restaurant. That’s what I liked about it, and the very simple typology of the three-legged stool, round seat. It’s quite archetypal. We didn’t invent the stool, It’s redesigning something that already exists. Because it’s something standard, it fits into very different environments.
On process and materiality
In that process of creating something, you need something to hold onto. You need some kind of constraint or parameter – something real, something defined. You need to narrow the possibilities. The choice of a certain material creates constraints. With wood you can do certain things, other things you cannot do with wood.
I like being in Milan. It’s a strange city but I like it. The nicest thing is meeting lots of friends.
Magis is available in Singapore through XTRA.
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