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The Kid Should See This

How is the Branca Chair made?

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Named for the word ‘branch’ in Italian, the Branca Chair is inspired by the natural forms of a tree. It was designed in 2010 by Sam Hecht and Kim Colin of London-based studio Industrial Facility.

Filmed in the Italian factory of furniture maker Mattiazzi, this V&A video documents how the chair is shaped with high-tech robotic manufacturing techniques and hand-crafting. The seven pieces of green-stained, waxed ash are then joined with well-fitted wooden dowels and glue.

“The chair is a particularly interesting example of the ways in which contemporary furniture designers can combine digital processes with more traditional methods.”

shaping the chair

More from the Victoria and Albert Museum, London:

“The chair was manufactured using a combination of robotic making, making with machine tools, and handwork. The block of wood that forms the back leg and upright, which supports the critical joints of the armrest, seat and back, is the most complex part of the chair. This piece was first cut with a machine saw, then sanded and further shaped by a computer-controlled oscillating spindle sander, and finally worked by an 8-axis, computer-controlled (CNC) robotic arm. This arm, fitted with eight different tools, further cut, carved, drilled, routed and sanded the upright.”

fitting the frame together

Watch these related furniture videos next:
• A Stool for Me, a 1973 Sesame Street classic
• How Frank Howarth made a lawn chair
• Traditional Swedish Woodworking (1923)
• The precise art of Japanese wood joinery
• Making Eames fiberglass shell chairs
• Grandpa Amu creates a ‘Lu Ban stool’ from a single block of wood

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