The chair’s unique design works the same way cupping your hands around your ear helps you hear better. Dubbed the Amplification Of The Senses Chair, this unique piece of public furniture can be found placed along the banks of the Han River in Seoul. Designed to be a place where citizens can go for a moment of reflection, relaxation, and tranquility, the chair’s unique design gathers sounds from around the river and channels them toward your ears, creating a unique ASMR experience that helps relax and rejuvenate you. “This river is one of the few places to feel nature in this polluted city,” said designer Eun Whan Cho, who was commissioned to make the chairs by the Seoul Metropolitan Government. “When we sit on these chairs, the sounds of trees and rivers are amplified,” he adds. The megaphone-shaped backrest of the chair not only heightens your sense of hearing but also blocks out your peripheral vision, allowing you to completely focus on what’s in front of you and helping your mind drown out any distracting thoughts and emotions.
Designer: Eun Whan Cho (Mootaa)
The chair’s clever design turns sitting into a much more intense activity by enhancing your hearing in a way that makes you concentrate on the tranquility of nature. Doing a much better job at boosting your focus and reducing your stress than any lo-fi playlist on YouTube possibly ever could, the bench acts as a place where you go to give your mind a break. You’re surrounded by nature, fresh air, the smell of grass, and the sounds of water rippling, birds chirping, and tree branches rustling in the wind.
The chair’s focus on nature is dual-fold. Not only does it physically help you connect with nature, it’s entirely made from recycled plastic waste too. Waste around Seoul is gathered, cleaned, and pulverized into tiny chips of colored plastic that are then bound with a resin and applied on large molds. Once the resin cures, the massive pieces are de-molded and assembled to form the chairs. Each chair removes a significant amount of plastic from entering landfills or becoming ‘nature’s problem’. In a way, the chair’s purpose, as well as its construction both, have a cleansing effect. The chair’s design cleanses the environment of plastic, and sitting on it helps cleanse the human’s mind of any distracting thoughts!
Plastic waste for the chairs began being collected in 2018, and the Seoul Metropolitan Government plans to manufacture and install the chairs on the promenade around the Han River by 2026.
The Amplification Of The Senses Chair is a Silver Winner of the A’ Design Award for the year 2022.