Benches are common in public spaces like playgrounds, airports, and malls. They are a convenient place to sit while waiting for someone or rest after walking. Benches also serve a decorative purpose, adding a style to the surroundings or a room. They come in different types like a garden bench, indoor bench, storage bench, or planter bench. We have seen a lot of well-designed pieces and have a few favorites like those minimalist yet elegant and come with designs that will make you think. The Arch Bench here is an ideal example of that.
Designer: Shinya Oguchi
Benches are ubiquitous like chairs, but they can be more useful as they can sit more than three people. Industrial designer Shinya Oguchi revisited “what makes a bench a bench”. He experimented on different widths of the bench, using paper mock-ups. He found a solution for a new structure for a bench that would also look beautiful like a sculpture: the arch shape. This then resulted in a new furniture concept called The Arch Bench.
The Arch Bench’s design seems impossible to ordinary eyes, but making this a sturdy item is the arch structure. Arches generally work by transferring and distributing the weight through the arch to a supporting foundation. As a result, they can support mass placed on top of them. Used in this conceptual piece, the structural strength of the arches has allowed the bench to carry a heavy load and offer more support to the seat.
From afar, The Arch Bench appears like an arcade with two arches in the middle and one half-arch on each side. The converged points below serve as the legs, giving more support to the structure. There are a total of five divided parts screwed by short bolts, firmly holding the bench together.
So the bench can carry the load of three persons, but is it comfortable enough to use? It probably is because of the gentle curves on the seat compared to those with flat seats. According to the designer, the seats are curved in response to the arch structure, inviting people to rest and sit on the bench, even for a while.
The Arch Bench is a minimalist piece of furniture with thin lines and a lightweight appearance. It uses a very thin sheet of metal known for its lightness and durability. The metal sheet is cut and curved to produce the ranged arch structures. The bench comes with a white matte finish that looks like a sheet of paper.
The Arch Bench is one beautiful sculpture-like piece of furniture that takes advantage of the arch shape and a super thin but strong medium. Its minimalist design shows that balance and proportion in furniture design are essential. Everyday items with a streamlined style like this bench give a sense of calm, order, and strength in this stressful world.