Andreu World is betting big on sustainably sourced wood, and they've recruited none other than Philippe Starck to be the initial emissary.
The formula of Starck + sustainable + 100% wood begins with Adela Rex, a lovely armchair in oak or walnut plywood: if the opinions of the NeoCon Best of judges count for anything, this is definitely a winning formulation.
Adela Rex took home honors in Seating: Sofas and Lounge for Best Product (silver) as well as Innovation. And this was essentially a sweep for Andreu World in this category, as both the gold award for Best Product and the Sustainability award were claimed by Patricia Urquiola's Nuez Lounge Bio, another harbinger of wise resource use and a minimal carbon footprint.
As beautiful as Bio is, we can see why Adela took home Innovation honors. Starck's new chair represents an ambitious project to streamline FSC certification by overseeing every aspect of production—from design, to cultivating the prime resource, to supervising harvesting, and finally manufacturing the chair.
Andreu World accomplishes this by using selected slow-growing wood harvested from forests that are on the company's own land. This not only guarantees the quality but also enables FSC 100% Certification, which in and of itself conserves resources, as much less effort is expended into establishing the certification.
The chair itself exhibits mastery with the time-honed technique of bentwood molding, using specialized equipment to achieve its subtle dips and curves and also enabling the precision forming that lets Adela assemble seamlessly: "Its design has great precision and combines perfectly in three pieces, like a puzzle, without the need for fittings, screws, or other elements."
Adela Rex is thus an exercise in minimalism, employing craftsmanship and technology with the most basic of materials to appeal on both intellectual and visceral levels. Says Starck, "we want wood in our lives; it's a basic human need to be surrounded by signs that remind us of nature."
It's gratifying when these signs represent conservation rather than degradation.
Adela Rex is available in two widths in both chair and armchair versions. Users may specify walnut or oak. Adela Rex is certainly stunning in its unadorned glory, but for those who prefer a bit of padding and color contrast, Andreu World offers a wide variety of upholstery and leather options. As part of the company's 100% wood project, it complies with FSC Certification reforested and controlled forests chain of custody oversight from cultivation to the final product. It is easily separable into its three pieces and 100% recyclable.