The customer’s request is the starting point of every project. Together, an idea is developed and tested with models. The materialisation is defined by means of samples. After that, a prototype is manufactured.

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Some projects are suitable for reproduction. Building on the experience of deveolping the prototypes, the product is refined and production is simplified. Sometimes, even industrial production is possible.

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Some private projects prove ideal even in larger numbers and are ordered for offices, surgeries or holiday homes.

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In the winter of 1996, after graduating as an interior designer, me and some fellow students and friends came up with the idea to form a design group in order to promote our furniture and lamps together. Some of us came from Lucerne and some from Basel - the connecting motorway gave us the name N2 (today A2).

Together with Valerie Kiock, I designed the chair "Spherize!" for this group. We wanted the fauteuil to look like a three-dimensional icon. And because we didn't want it to be powerful, we made it small. It has the seating of a camping chair, but it appears bigger with its outward curving surfaces. Hence the name "Spherize!", a Photoshop command that visually curves surfaces like fish eyes.

The first chair was made of 4mm poplar plywood, mounted with corner strips fixed by hundreds of small screws. After our classic modern training (show construction etc. ), it was fun to cover up hundreds of screws with knifing filler. In our view, the icon chair had to be light, so the construction was extremely light and fragile. Therefore, support was needed: we inserted an invisible sitting ball that carried the weight of the person sitting down. In the back and armrests, bed springs pressed the surfaces outwards. When lifted, the chair felt like a cello under pressure.

Later, "Spherize!" was manufactured and distributed by the Dutch company "hidden" in rotationally moulded polyethylene. The serial version was also equipped with a valve on the back to increase the air pressure. Later, I added an ottoman and table called "Cooler" to go with the single chair.

Unfortunately, „hidden“ went bankrupt around 1999. Today, "Spherize!" is still produced and distributed in a very small edition by the Belgian company "feek".

Valerie Kiock is now a freelance graphic designer in Munich.

Photo: Designsammlung, Museum für Gestaltung Zürich ZHdK.

Museum für Gestaltung Zürich

Inflatable armchair named after a Photoshop filter.
Graphic designer and furniture designer meet in the design process.
Read in more detail on a large desktop screen.

Design: 1996 Valerie Kiock and Kuno Nüssli
2001 Swiss Federal Prize for Design



The idea for SASOSU was a meandering steel tube which performs all functions of the bed: bed leg - curve - longitudinal support - curve - bed leg - curve - traverse on the floor - curve - bed leg - curve - central support - curve - bed leg - curve - second traverse on the floor - curve - bed leg - curve - longitudinal support - curve - bed leg - finished.

Square steel makes square corners, round tube makes a curve. Round tube calls for a galvanic finish, and so I decided to give the bed a chrome-plated finish – just like many tubular steel pieces of the modern period. The bed slats are placed on skewing flanges welded to the longitudinal supports, so no middle support is needed. However, connecting rods to the central support are necessary in order to create the required stability.

Thanks to Leo Zimmermann, SASOSU was for sale in some Theo Jakob stores in 2003, and Beat Heuberger of Punkt 1 also sold several pieces. However, there were several warranty cases, and the high production costs brought the project to a close.

Photo: Designsammlung, Museum für Gestaltung Zürich ZHdK.

Museum für Gestaltung Zürich

Further development of the ANANA bed in widths from 140 cm. One bent steel tube for all functions of the bed structure. A new bed was created as a consequence of the design. Please read in more detail on a large screen.

Container DS

I have already told the story of the Container DS above. In 2015, some components of the system were purchased by the Swiss government and can now be seen in the collection of the Museum für Gestaltung Zürich.

Photo: Designsammlung, Museum für Gestaltung Zürich ZHdK.

Museum für Gestaltung Zürich
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At the moment I’m interested in pre-industrial woodwork: conical table legs, spars that are finer at the top, funnel-shaped constructions, and, of course, my boat projects.

Want to come over for a cup of coffee?