Designer Patrick Jouin believes that wood is the future.
In an era when technology is presumably the answer to everything, this assertion may sound surprising. But Jouin makes a pretty convincing case for it, especially when thinking in terms of sustainability and conservation of resources: "Wood is an amazing material. It's always growing and we have to take care of it. And every piece of wood is different. When you arrive in a room with the Héra Lounge, you will see a piece of nature, a piece of what nature can make and how we can use it.”
Jouin doubles down on this notion when he asserts that he doesn't design objects. Rather, he says, "I make a gesture, I design the relation with the body."
The whole point of Héra (designed for Pedrali in 2019 but expanded this year with a slightly different silhouette) is to locate a nexus between material and interaction, to put nature into dialogue with our various physiological vicissitudes and create a pleasing result.
The chair expresses an elegant simplicity. The tapered armrests and subtly curved back are formed of two pieces, with a seamless junction created via advanced joinery techniques. The cushioned seat is similarly minimalist, made of polyurethane foam supported with elastic bands. Héra is manufactured using the least amount of materials possible.
Héra's wooden elements are FSC-C113458 certified. They're finished with water-based coatings that are composed mostly of plant-derived resins. Named after the Greek goddess of nature, Héra embodies an environmental ethos, which is especially apropos in view of Jouin's philosophy of designing with respect for nature, using its inherent properties to work with it rather than against it: "What I love most about this product is that it has succeeded in making such a rigid material comfortable, the result of combining the Italian company's know-how with the best craft joinery techniques."