ABSTRACT: The chair CHARUKASERA represents an icon, enduring the flow of time. The icon, a design that has endured different periods of time and diverse moments of historical significance.
The chair designs of today, aren’t crafted for only ergonomic reasons, they are now, statements of personal identity, their designs drawing inspiration from and influenced by art movements such as Art Nouveau, Art Deco and Cubism, whilst technological innovation, comfort, functionality and functional flexibility remain at the heart of the design contributing to the appeal that chairs convey to, both, the designers and to the people that use them, alike.
First Award | DAF 2016 Awards
Category: Product Design (Built)
Participant  Name: Mohammed Afnan
Team Members:  Arun Shekar
Country: India

Redefining Form For Charukasera (2)
Redefining Form For Charukasera (2)

The client requirements were comprehensively specific:
The traditional Charukasera, long associated with the wise and the elderly, should, in this modern adaptation, cater to each one of the family, with special care taken to appeal to the younger generation at large.
Ergo, special care has been taken to make it fit ‘flow’. The result: a masterful iteration of the Charukasera that stand out from the rest. A chair that has become the manifesto of an entire generation’s altogether.
Redefining Form For Charukasera (3)
Redefining Form For Charukasera (3)

Emphasis was placed on the implementation of and the technical ability to incorporate environmentally friendly materials in the production process. Few examples of this approach include lean production, utilization of more durable albeit lighter materials, toxic-free chemicals, lowering energy of production, and significantly minimizing green-house gases generated by transportation and production. [This was achieved by using locally available materials] Our result is a socio-environmentally responsible product with a lighter carbon footprint, lighter on the Earth, but better than ever.

As social and historical influences play a vital role in chair designs, these ‘influences’ are visually represented in the chair. Traditional and modern techniques are visually applied to chairs such as the form and wood seen in the Arts and Crafts style represented in the Modernism Movement.
Rocking The Chair:
The idea to design and fabricate an easy chair originates from a client with a specific task and utility for this project. To design and fabricate an easy chair that retains the traditional origins of design whilst updating it to match the modern times – in brief, a modern rendition of a traditional design.
To design and fabricate this easy chair, the need to compare it with the other similar products that are available in the market was quintessential to ensure the novelty of the design and, ergo, the idea.
The project involves various phases right from the concept design, to the designing and the fabrication process. Each of the phases demanded a motivated team that brings varied experience to the table, right from the skill to operate various type of machinery, to training to work under pressure, to soft skills such as time management, planning, and aggressively marketing the idea especially during work progress presentation.
Redefining Form For Charukasera (4)
Redefining Form For Charukasera (4)

Sync & Morphology Of The Form:
Chaarukasera – It is an element of Kerala tradition and heritage – usually associated with the elderly of the home and since time immemorial has adorned every lounge of a residence – instantly rendering grandeur and grace to the home. It is from this perspective; we have designed this complex form, a form that syncs modernity and tradition, to adapt technological progress and technical expertise to the traditional one in abstraction.
The client’s forethought was comprehensive and clear:
The traditional Charukasera, long associated with the wise and elderly generation, to be re-designed into a modern iteration to adapt to the current generation.
Keeping that in mind, the design program has been juxtaposed with traditional and contemporary style to arrive at the final product – the design form, a modern representation of the traditional Chaarukasera, is steeped in tradition whilst the body has been updated to keep up with the growing trend of the times.
Redefining Form For Charukasera (5)
Redefining Form For Charukasera (5)

Design Making Data:
Firstly, a chair is used as a seating tool, to study or relax. It is a tool that can be used for relaxation and it is conveniently pleasurable, when one can use it anywhere and anytime.
Observing people and their sitting behavior, we noticed that many people move, swing or fidget and rarely sit still. Shifting your body back and forth is a natural instinct for a number of situations including fear, pain, grief, loneliness, stress and most commonly – discomfort.
Sitting in a laid back chair is akin to sitting in a zero-gravity position it brings with it a sense of weightlessness, which de-stresses the body and the mind.
The Charukasera styled laid back chair has been designed keeping these observations in mind, right from its inception to material assimilation to the final product assembly.
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