In 1960, iconic Danish architect and designer Arne Jacobsen introduced Copenhagen’s first skyscraper, complete with a full suite of designs. Fast forward to 2016, and the parallels are undeniable as Bjarke Ingels and KiBiSi took Danish design abroad, reinvented the American skyscraper and presented the inviting VIA57™ lounge chair as the design centrepiece.
According to Bjarke Ingels, "The VIA57 chair combines Scandinavian simplicity and elegance with American comfort and generosity."
The development process to create the VIA57™ is a combination of modelling by hand and digital modelling. Designed by, KiBiSi, this group was founded in Copenhagen by Lars Larsen, Bjarke Ingels and Jens Martin Skibsted. KiBiSi merges the faculties of its founding partners into a symbiotic hybrid of design, architecture and ideation.
The design group looked to the shape of their skyscraper, explored every angle and gained a haptic understanding of comfort and utility. The result is soft comfort and a modular functionality that creates multiple settings—characterised by a visual appeal that makes VIA57™ the centre of attention. “The rotated corners allow a variety of social configurations while also evoking the tetrahedronical geometry of its parent architecture.” – Bjarke Ingels
The VIA57™ offers flexible modules and inventive design that easily fits into modern lifestyles. The easy reconfiguration option means it suits multiple purposes. It works beautifully as a small sofa for an intimate conversation or expanded to create a lounge area with a welcoming atmosphere. Equally, the VIA57™ lounge chair is made to stand out on its own as an inviting piece of sculpture that doubles as a piece of furniture.
"We never get a design proposal and then just start manufacturing the pieces. It's always a collaboration and a co-creation", says Marie-Louise Høstbo, Creative Design Director at Fritz Hansen. “Taking a design from concept to a functional piece of furniture is a process where creative ideas, proposals and Fritz Hansen’s internal knowledge come together.”
What resulted is a concept called “Scan-American”: a seamless blend of lean Scandinavian design meets generous American comfort. Its contours mirror that of its eponymous building with an openness and versatility that instils the lounge chair with a life beyond its original destination. At the same time, its carefully constructed form meets the Fritz Hansen standards of quality, detail, and ageless design.