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Old Meets New in the Inventive, Sustainable Gù Chair

Topping my short list of things I like about the Gù Chair is the fortuitous fact of its name and subsequent pronunciation, for there are few utterances in the English language as funny and fun as “goo.” Language, of course, having significant significatory meaning beyond its shape in our mouths, the ramifications of Gù go much further as the term literally translates as “solid, firm, or stable.”

Gù Chair. Designed by Zhang Lei, Christoph John, and Jovana Bogdanovic. Manufactured by From Yuhang.



From Yuhang’s Gù Chair Helps Preserve a Venerated Old World Technique


Given the word’s meaning in English, one might be forgiven for meeting the above with a certain degree of pique, since American “goo” is anything but. But then the Gù Chair by From Yuhang is full of surprises. Constructed of natural bamboo paper, Gù is soft and solid at once, offering the easy aesthetic of a hand-torn sheet coupled with the clean contemporary lines of an untreated birch base.

Gù Chair. Designed by Zhang Lei, Christoph John, and Jovana Bogdanovic. Manufactured by From Yuhang.

The pair of materials used in Gù show a marked complementarity. While the seat’s exterior displays the roughened surface characteristic of bamboo paper, the inside has been refined to a high sheen, staying step for step with the finely finished texture of the beech legs.

Gù Chair. Designed by Zhang Lei, Christoph John, and Jovana Bogdanovic. Manufactured by From Yuhang.

The designers behind Gù set out to re-purpose a traditional material by changing the venue of its use. Thus, the historical bamboo paper villages of Yuhang are re-contextualized into an attractive and functional design piece with a pronounced sustainable component, creating, in the process, a chair that celebrates the past while meeting the aesthetic imperatives of the new millennium.

Gù Chair. Designed by Zhang Lei, Christoph John, and Jovana Bogdanovic. Manufactured by From Yuhang.

About the Manufacturer: Though each of its principals is not actually from Yuhang, Zhang Lei, Christoph John, and Jovana Bogdanovic, are all unified in their goal of achieving “the fusion of traditional craft and culture with modern design and civilization.” Examples of this auspicious objective abound within From Yuhang’s extensive portfolio: the bamboo paper Gù Chair; the bamboo, porcelain powder, and epoxy resin Ning Textile; and the silk floss Rǎn Lamp.
Posted April 25th, 2012 by Joseph Starr


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