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First it was The Aeron Chair. Then the Mirra. And now, the... Worknest.
Worknest by Ronan & Erwan Bouroullec, 2006
Worknest is quite the opposite to technical in appearance, deliberately stressing as it does homely features. In the consistency of its design, and its calm, yet emotional shape, it exudes sheer comfort and ingeniously conceals the technical features. Even the armrests are covered with knitted fabric, its extreme elasticity ensuring that the functions are fully maintained. As such Worknest’s invisible, cutting-edge mechanism ensures the harmonious operation of all moving parts while offering maximum ergonomic quality. Available as of summer 2007.
With the office furniture system Joyn, which was launched in the year 2002, Vitra presented an innovative concept for the contemporary office interior. The marketing success of the Joyn system, developed in collaboration with Erwan and Ronan Bouroullec, has proven its validity as a forward-looking response to the ongoing transformation of working methods and organisation.
At Orgatec 2006, Vitra is now introducing Worknest, an ideal companion chair for the Joyn desking system that was likewise developed in collaboration with the Bouroullec brothers. The office swivel chair Worknest facilitates teamwork, easy communication and interaction, on the one hand. On the other hand – and herein lies its special quality – Worknest reflects a fundamental commitment to the "Nesting" concept. It accommodates the need of employees for a semi-private space, for individuality and a sense of personal well-being – a need that has been previously neglected in the open plan office.
Especially in an open space work environment, the desire for privacy and a touch of domesticity is not merely legitimate: its fulfilment is extremely important for the inspiration and motivation of individuals. This awareness was the impetus for the development of Worknest.
For this reason, special consideration was given to emotional aspects of the chair's design. With its curving, enveloping shape and comparatively soft upholstery, the chair gives an immediate impression of calm invitation. The armrests, which seem to grow naturally out of the seat cushion, are not just a uniquely recognisable design element of Worknest: Together with the actual seat cushion and backrest, they define an interior space that gives the user a pleasant feeling of cosy comfort, like an armchair.
Colour is a fundamental design element of Worknest. The psychological effect of colours and their influence on people's sense of well-being is long established, having been substantiated by many scientific studies. While working on this chair, Ronan and Erwan Bouroullec took the aptly articulated observation of Verner Panton to heart: "One sits more comfortably on a colour that one likes."
For the upholstery cover, they assembled a palette of seven different hues, whose earthy warmth has an effect that is both calming and invigorating. The carefully chosen colours not only emphasise the homelike character of Worknest; they also contribute to a positive identification with the office environment.
State-of-the-art knitting technology has been used to produce the precisely fitted upholstery covers for Worknest. This robust knit enhances the quality of the chair and contributes to its functional longevity. Because of its extraordinary elasticity, the knitted cover fabric adapts effortlessly to the height adjustment of the armrests. Thanks to its special characteristics, this knit offers further advantages: the cover is custom fit to the shape of the chair, thereby eliminating the need for seams or folds, which can be irritating. In addition, the high breathability of the knit cover, in comparison to denser woven fabrics, enhances seating comfort.
Worknest naturally incorporates all of the technical features that are expected of an office swivel chair in the modern work environment: a synchronised mechanism, adaptable backrest resistance, height-adjustable armrests and an individually adjustable lumbar support. However, this hidden technology plays a subordinate role in the chair's appearance. For the exemplary degree to which Worknest fulfils the demands placed on a contemporary office chair is not evidenced in its technical features, but in the calming, homelike touches it brings to the highly standardised, even sterile world of the office.
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