Sustainable Seating

Greek Product Designer Creates Chair That’s Both Elegant and Environmentally-Friendly

For Spyros Kizis, it seems design is in his blood. His father opened Kizis Architects some forty years ago, when Spyros would have just been a twinkle in his eye. Spyros studied product design at Edinburgh College of Art. Today Spyros is in the exciting position of getting his latest creation, the Artichair to mass-production stage.

“The chair was developed through an approach to research that explores current environmental and social issues and could potentially serve as a response to the current economic crisis in Greece through the development of ecological agriculture,” Spyros tells us. The voluptuous design is eco-friendly, being made from Artichoke Thistle plant and a bio-based resin.

Furniture company Schaffenburg Office Furniture B.V. will be helping bring Spyros’s designs to a wider audience, by mass producing his Artichair later this year.

We were keen to hear more from this bright young designer:

The Plus: What was it like working with Schaffenburg?
Spyros Kizis:
They were excited with the material, and I was excited with their innovative and fresh way of thinking which is hard to find in companies. We decided to make a brand new collection with them, starting with a new chair. The designs are now ready, and we have been through many designs in order to stick with one.

TP: Is sustainability a big part of all your designs?
Not always. In my opinion sustainability needs to be part of designing in general, but where it really matters, is at the big industries. In one off pieces or art pieces, the impact is much smaller and I very often work at this scale.

TP: If you had to choose…form or function?
Haha..well, I believe that the old modernist ideas are quite important to keep them as a guideline, but they are not the rule. I would not go for just one of them. It is the form and the “materiality” of an object that might make you feel comfortable in a space. There are cases where pure function might be so ugly that it drives you away and many cases where an object is beautiful indeed but non functional at all… It depends always on the purpose of the design…If the designer knows why he is designing each project, then the result will come out the right way.

TP: What designs are you working on now?
I am working on a domestic furniture collection, a packaging project and a case study on the usage of recycled paper in product design.

Work in process: