Papilio Side Chair
for B&B Italia
The Papilio chair designed by Naoto Fukasawa for B&B Italia features curves and a striking juxtaposition of an upholstered covered seat and back with tubular steel legs. The seat and back cover is a continuous expanse that gently folds over the front of the Papilio chair – its back arches gently at the top to create an enveloping backrest for the sitter. Papilio side chair’s internal structure is composed of flexible thermoplastic that features a removable cover available in a range of textile and leather options. Its removable cover features a vertical zipper in the back of the chair that runs from the seat to the top edge of the backrest – its clever placement coupled with the associated textural juxtaposition of its stainless composition with the upholstered cover is striking. Papilio’s legs are available in either bronzed nickel painted or bright chromed with plastic glides.
Japanese industrial design icon Naoto Fukasawa is known for work that is simultaneously sculptural and functional. From CD players, cell phones, and electrical appliances, to furniture for sitting, sleeping and eating, Fukasawa’s work is always museum-quality. In fact, a wall-mounted CD player he designed for Muji is part of the Museum of Modern Art’s permanent collection. Inspired by the outline and the shape of a volume or item, he looks for inspiration in the subconscious thoughts that humans have about objects.
Fukasawa has immersed himself in the electronics world since the beginning of his career, at Seiko Epson in Japan, where he designed products such as wrist TVs and mini printers. He also spent time in the U.S. working with companies in Silicon Valley, and was involved in the development of a design concept for Apple. He continued to dream up technological products when he returned to Japan, while at the same time taking on impressive furniture collaborations that quickly made him a household name in the industry. As a furniture designer, he has collaborated on award-winning pieces for B&B Italia, Driade, Magis, Artemide, Danese, Boffi, and more. Works like the Piccola Papilio lounge for B&B Italia reveal Fukasawa’s energetic approach to minimalism. The chair’s enveloping form is utterly simplistic and captivatingly artful at the same time.