Some of the most innovative, powerful design takes its strength from its sculptural elements. In certain cases it is a sense of fragility that offers impact – the tapered leg and lightness of Gio Ponti’s Superleggera, for instance. At other times it is the imposing, muscular heft of the object that strikes a chord: A strong sense of presence. There have been many influential pieces of design from the last 100 years that have come from a utilitarian place including the LC14 Tabouret Cabanon Chestnut from 1952, which is essentially a simple, easily transportable block to sit on – designed by Charlotte Perriand, Pierre Jeanneret, and his cousin Le Corbusier. The LC14 is a Brutalist classic.
There is a line to be drawn between it, and the Cluster Stool, originally developed for use at the Starbucks Reserve Roastery in Manhattan in 2018. The Cluster is a simple, easy to move object for sitting on, and it stacks neatly away without the need to be hidden. A group of Clusters looks “on purpose,” and pleasing to the eye. It belongs to a canon of utilitarian, Modernist stools, including Perriand’s Tabouret Berger Stool, from 1953, that looks like the kind of ultra-functional object you may find in a Japanese onsen – a design that may have existed unchanged for centuries. It is stark, but the dip in the seat and the rounded taper of its four legs is elegant and sculptural.
Width 19 5/8"
Depth 15 3/4"
Height 16 3/4"
Weight 22.9 lbs
Material Pictured: Ebonized Oak