A stool with a hard look, which is unexpectedly soft.

Stone Foam Stool | Study Project, 2015

The Stone Foam Stool arose from Matthijs’ fascination for Installation Art. The perception, interaction and contradictions, -characteristic of Installation Art- are brought together in this stool. A stool with a hard look, which is unexpectedly soft.

After a three-month material research into polyurethane soft foam material, Matthijs developed a recipe that creates Stone Foam. By adding additional ingredients such as clay granules and pigment to the liquid soft foam, the expanded foam has a raw stone texture, without affecting the viscoelastic properties of the foam. Due to the material’s viscoelastic properties and the need to be touched, the Stone Foam material was chosen to be transformed into a chair design. Sculptural as an art piece, yet functional as a comfortable seat.

A silicone mold -derived from an original soapstone- is filled with the Stone Foam mixture. During expansion, the mixture increases sixteen times in volume and takes over the shape of the mold. After the casting is released, the clay granules are dissolved and the stone texture appears. The casting is finetuned with multiple shades of gray for a more natural result and the chrome legs are attached to the seat.

The Stone Foam Stool traverses the boundary between sculpture and furniture. With its thin, chrome legs, the full emphasis remains on the Stone Foam material and its lifelike form. Sculptural, yet functional, desired to be touched.

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