Yup’ik chair

posted in: furniture | 0

a contemporary windsor chair inspired by the kayaks of the Alaskan Yup’ik people.

I was once lucky enough to spend time with the Yup’ik people who live on the Alaskan coast north of Bristol Bay.  They base the construction of their kayaks on their body dimensions… so the width will be the distance from finger tip to elbow, the curve of the side equivalent to three fingers’ width etc.  I love the way this tailors the boat to the person and escapes the tyranny of numbers.  So the Yup’ik Chair  pays homage to this tradition.The stick widths across the back are the same as my finger widths and those dimensions are echoed elsewhere in the piece. The sticks and stretchers are all shaped like tiny kayaks, and  unlike traditional Windsor chairs, the sticks of the Yup’ik Chair are curved to fit the back.

The visual result is a dynamic flowing pattern that moves as you walk round the chair, and a petal-like fan of sticks that frames the sitter like an Elizabethan collar.

Yup'ik Chair by Grant Sonnex

Yup'ik Chair by Grant Sonnex

Yup'ik Chair by Grant Sonnex