This carved wood bench hides an unexpected surprise

April 13, 2017 by  
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This simple-looking bench hides a two-fold surprise. A closer look reveals that the ‘tufted’ bench is actually carved out of solid wood – and when you sit down it’s bouncy and soft! Valentijn Rieb and Andrea Schimmer perfectly replicated the iconic form of a Chesterfield bench while marrying the look of wood with the comfot of a springy seat. Chester-Block-Hocker updates the classic Chesterfield bench with carved beach wood blocks. The soft, bouncy element comes from the inner support structure of the bench. Thanks to springs located under each diamond-shaped chunk of wood, this bench serves as a cushy seat. The legs of the bench are upholstered with leather to make the transformation complete. Related: Max Lamb’s “Exercises in Seating” is a primitive investigation of materials at Milan Design Week This design is the result of modern technology meeting manual labor and traditional craftsmanship. To realize Chester-Block-Hocker, the blocks were CNC milled and shaped by hand. Made with the utmost precision and a great attention to the detail, this bench offers a soft touch and a surprising material experience that will intrigue you each time you take a seat. The Chester-Block-Hocker won the Baars & Bloemhoff “Master of Materials” prize and is on show at the Masterly Dutch exhibition at Palazzo Turati in the 5VIE design district at Milan Design Week 2017 . + Milan Design Week images by Maria Novozhilova for Inhabitat

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This carved wood bench hides an unexpected surprise

Honda steps up with new green car strategy

April 13, 2017 by  
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Honda’s green car strategy has taken criticism over the past few years for its inability to keep up with the venerable Toyota Prius . Well, the automaker is stepping up with their introduction of the new Clarity Electric and Clarity Plug-in hybrid recently – at the New York Auto Show. The new Clarity Electric and Clarity Plug-in hybrid will be sold alongside the Clarity Fuel Cell , which is already on sale. With all three models, Honda hopes to be able to sell at least 75,000 Clarity vehicles in the first four model years. The Clarity will also help Honda reach its goal of having two-thirds of its vehicles electrified by 2030. Related: 2017 Honda Clarity fuel cell vehicle is ready for the mainstream The Honda Clarity Plug-in Hybrid will have a 42-mile electric driving range, which is still shy of the Chevy Volt, but longer than the Toyota Prius Prime . Once the battery is depleted, the Clarity Plug-in Hybrid uses a 1.5-liter Atkinson cycle 4-cylinder engine to give it an overall driving range rating of over 330 miles. The Clarity Plug-in hybrid’s electric motor generates 181-horsepower electric motor with 232 lb.-ft. of torque and is mated to a 17-kilowatt hour (kWh) battery. It will only take 2.5 hours to fully recharge it using a 240 volt outlet. The Clarity Plug-in Hybrid will have EPA fuel economy rating of 105 MPGe. The Honda Clarity Electric is powered by a 161-horsepower electric motor with 221 lb.-ft. of torque that is mated to a 25.5-kWh battery pack. The Clarity Electric will only have a driving range of around 80 miles, but it can by fully charged in just over three hours at 240 volts or up to 80 percent in just 30 minutes using a DC fast charger . The Clarity Electric will have a 111 combined MPGe rating. The Clarity Electric’s driving range is a bit disappointing, since we now have other electric cars with a much longer driving range. Still, Honda expects the Clarity Plug-in hybrid to be the sales volume leader out of the three Clarity models. Images @Honda + Honda

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Honda steps up with new green car strategy

Pavilion made from 300 pairs of blue jeans just popped up in Milan

April 5, 2017 by  
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Here’s something we’ve never seen before: a structure made entirely of pants! Starchitects Diller Scofidio+ Renfro just unveiled a sprawling pavilion made from 300 pairs of blue jeans in Milan. The installation is called Linking Minds , and it re-interprets the idea of using ready-made modules (in this case pants) in architecture. The surreal jean canopy soars over the historic Palazzo Litta in Milan. While the individual pairs of pants represent the human scale of urban life, the meshed twisted structure points to a sense of community and the collective nature of architecture. Liz Diller engaged with the historical Palazzo Litta in 5VIE during Milan Design Week 2017 to reinterpret one of the most basic architectural elements: the roof. Formally, Diller’s suspended structure resembles the 3D-printed twisted mesh typically used for festivals. However, in this case the structure is realized with an unexpected, simple but iconic material: denim. Jeans are one of the most ubiquitous garments around the world, however they’re also very private and intimate items that we wear in direct contact with our skin. Related: 14 conversation-starting chairs that push the boundaries of design Jeans are also a curious object in terms of structure. Having two legs and one waist, it has an implicit structural logic that allows various combinations and spatial patterns. Connected waist-to-waist and cuff-to-cuff, and filled with air, the Linking Minds installation is a visually dynamic work of art and architecture that is one of the main landmarks of Milan Design Week 2017 . Diller Scofidio+ Renfro + Milan Design Week

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Pavilion made from 300 pairs of blue jeans just popped up in Milan

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