Photo Magnus Glans
Johannes Lif enjoys a challenge, which is why he chose to make a chair, an archetypal item of furniture that in many ways is one of the most difficult to design. For Johannes, design is all about the challenge of balancing and capturing different elements, properties and desires in one form.
“I got the idea for my chair from a woven chest that I saw in a second-hand shop,” explains Johannes. The weaving appears in the back of the chair, in an innovative nod to traditional basket weaving. The weaving also showcases the versatility of pine as a light, but strong and flexible material.
The design has a Nordic feel, but Johannes has consciously tailored his chair to Chinese needs. People in China sit differently, usually a little lower and further out on the chair, and they like furniture with good width. The challenge has been to find a balance between the Nordic look and Chinese needs.
Johannes sees his background in joinery as an asset, particularly when resolving structural problems, but also when completing his full-scale sketches. However, he appreciates that everyone in the group works differently and sees a real strength in the way Malmstens has so many different talents gathered under one roof.