Or are you looking for Search the Archives?

Please complete the form to email this item.

Stool - Ishinomaki stool

Ishinomaki stool

  • Object:

    Stool

  • Place of origin:

    Ishinomaki (manufactured)

  • Date:

    2011 (designed)
    May 2015 (assembled)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Ashizawa, Keiji, born 1973 (designer)
    Ishinomaki Laboratory (manufacturers)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Red cedar, assembled from a flat-pack

  • Credit Line:

    Given by Rupert Faulkner

  • Museum number:

    W.4-2015

  • Gallery location:

    In Storage

This small stool, designed by Tokyo-based architect Keiji Ashizawa, is part of a range of simple furniture produced in Japan by the Ishinomaki Laboratory. Its design sprung from the relief effort which followed the devastation caused by 2011 Tōhoku earthquake and tsunami, a disaster which claimed over 3000 lives in the city of Ishinomaki.

A number of architects and designers, mostly Japanese, have designed for the workshop, attracted to its programme of socially-motivated design. Initially, all furniture produced by the factory was constructed from standard lengths of red cedar, fitted together in various ways and assembled using only a screwdriver or hammer. This simple production process allowed the furniture to be built by locals, without specialist skills. The consistency of material and construction gives the collection a unified aesthetic, regardless of who designed each piece. This stool, one of the Ishinomaki Laboratory’s first designs, was intended as a step-stool to be used at the entrances of temporary housing.

Physical description

Small flat-pack stool of red cedar, joined by screws. The seat is formed by two plankss over supporting A-frame legs.

Place of Origin

Ishinomaki (manufactured)

Date

2011 (designed)
May 2015 (assembled)

Artist/maker

Ashizawa, Keiji, born 1973 (designer)
Ishinomaki Laboratory (manufacturers)

Materials and Techniques

Red cedar, assembled from a flat-pack

Dimensions

Width: 40 cm, Height: 42 cm, Depth: 30 cm

Object history note

Given to the V&A in 2015 by Rupert Faulkner [RF 2015/269]; received as a flat-pack.

Historical context note

This small stool, designed by Tokyo-based architect Keiji Ashizawa, is part of a range of simple furniture produced in Japan by the Ishinomaki Laboratory. Its design sprung from the relief effort which followed the devastation caused by 2011 Tōhoku earthquake and tsunami, a disaster which claimed over 3000 lives in the city of Ishinomaki. Ashizawa came to Ishinomaki shortly after the tsunami to help a friend rebuild his ruined restaurant. Instead, the restaurant’s ground floor became the first premises of the Ishinomaki Laboratory, a workshop where local people effected by the disaster could come to learn to build and repair furniture. Collaboration with Herman Miller allowed the Ishinomaki Laboratory to subsequently expand into a manufacturing enterprise and the profits generated have been used to revitalise the local economy.

In Japan it is considered poor etiquette to wear shoes inside the house, so generally they are left in the entranceway. This stool, intended for use both in and out of doors, allows a visitor a place to remove their footwear before entering a dwelling.

Descriptive line

Ishinomaki stool; Keiji Ashizawa for Ishinomaki Laboratory; Ishinomaki, Japan; designed 2011, made 2014-15

Materials

Red cedar

Techniques

Assembled

Categories

Furniture; Household objects

Production Type

Mass produced

Collection

Furniture and Woodwork Collection

Large image request

Please confirm you are using these images within the following terms and conditions, by acknowledging each of the following key points:

Please let us know how you intend to use the images you will be downloading.