Streamlined lightness, high customization
Changes in the social environment and the advancement of technology have influenced how we work in the modern office. A typical office scene used to be full of assigned desks for work either at a computer or with pens and paper in hand. Nowadays, we are seeing more and more companies move away from this traditional style of work, adapting to a free-address offices where people are free to move around throughout the day- tablet, laptop or smartphone to hand. But changes haven’t just been occurring in how we work, office interiors have also been changing in their design, look and feel, too. New materials and finishes have been introduced and diversified the aesthetics of the workplaces. Office spaces used to have the tendency to feel dull or sterile, but today, many offices are anything but boring. To keep in line with increasingly design-conscious office spaces, office chairs had to adapt as well.
With this in mind, Okamura wanted to create a new chair that could be loved by anyone. Once again we collaborated with Italy’s ITALDESIGN. The brief was to design a globally cherished chair with a sense of future.
"With the rise of Activity Based Working and Free Address workspaces, people now often share chairs with their colleagues. It's become more important than ever, for example, that the backrest and seat can be easily adjusted no matter who takes a seat. We also wanted to increase the simplicity and ease of customization in relation to the changes occurring in modern office spaces - both in terms of functionality and aesthetics. We aimed to create a chair that you could not only chose the color of the frame and fabric, but also customize in other ways, too." Okamura Project Team/Product Producer - Takuya Takahashi
Style and function, beautifully embodied in the shape of ITALDESIGN
The industrial design department of ITALDESIGN, a global design firm renowned for its stunning supercars. Finora marks our 6th collaboration with ITALDESIGN with other collaborations including flagship chairs Contessa and Sabrina.
Nicola Guelfo, the chief designer of Finora wanted to combine all functions and styling into one sleek form. The flexible backrest of Finora flows down under the seat of the chair, creating a light, unified form. The mechanism and levers for adjustments such as seat height, reclining tension, and seat depth are all placed neatly under the seat. Beautiful from every angle, this chair draws its design inspiration from the automobile industry.
Another unique design feature is the custom panel on the backrest frame. The panels are available in silver, black or white, all with a sleek gloss finish to smartly contrast with the matte backrest frame. The panels not only add an additional aspect of visual interest, but they increase the customizability of the chair too, so you can truly make it your own. This unique feature, which evokes images of sports cars, is something only ITALDESIGN could create.
"We focused a lot of our energy on how to integrate the necessary mechanical elements required of an office chair into the design we had envisioned. We aimed to create a sleek continuation between the backrest frame and underneath the seat to give a harmonious, balanced look. In order to reach this form, we had 4 key words in mind when working: Personal (Customization) - Precious (Close attention to detail in form, function and comfort) - Pure (Beautiful form, without any excess) - Powerful (Strength & high performance, whilst) - ITALDESIGN - Nicola Guelfo & Massimo Borelli
The Industrial Design Division of ITALDESIGN, headquartered in Moncalieri, Torino - Italy, was established in 1981 and today is one of the most renowned and leading organizations in the industrial design field on a worldwide level.
Office seating born from collaboration with ITALDESIGN
Okamura's new approach - realizing an unprecedented form and structure.
The design concept for Finora proposed by ITALDESIGN was right on point for the futuristic chair we were aiming for. But, before the design could take a physical form, there were many hurdles to overcome. Before anything else, the Okamura Project Team had to inspect all of the components individually to ensure they met the both style and strength requirements.
The most difficult hurdle we faced structurally was extending the arms seamlessly from the backrest frame in order to maintain the sleek, uninterrupted form of Finora’s profile, without losing any of the strength required of a task chair.
An immense amount of engineering effort was put into connecting the arms to the backrest seamlessly without exposing the screws and structural elements on the exterior of the chair. The beautiful lightness of the backrest is a significant characteristic of Finora which stands out in comparison to other conventional office chairs.
In order to strike the perfect balance of beauty, strength and manufacturing efficiency, a flexible resin is used in the backrest to allow the chair to adapt to a wide range of postures.
To ensure maximum comfort and reduce pressure on the thighs each seat type, both mesh and cushion seats, have their own unique features. While the mesh type is fitted with soft urethane foam underneath the mesh at the front of the seat, the cushion seat uses our unique Multi-Density Cushion, which utilizes urethane foam in three varying densities - the front of the seat is soft whilst the sides and rear of the cushion are made of firmer foam to help support good posture. Okamura’s engineering expertise is put to work even in places not immediately obvious.
"Whilst making sure to honor the image proposed by ITALDESIGN, we overcame many challenges to create a final functional product. For example, extending the arms from the backrest of the chair was a first for Okamura. Additionally, for the highly adjustable 4D arms, there was a lot of engineering and function we had to fit in, but we couldn't compromise the lines designed by ITALDESIGN. So together with the engineering team, we spent a lot of time creating armrests that move smoothly and were sufficiently strong, whilst still staying true to the original design." Okamura Project Team Design | Shinpei Totsuka - Shoichi Izawa - Ryo Igarashi
It was a tremendous challenge to make sure all parts of Finora were strong enough to meet our exacting standards and live up to our reputation for quality, whilst still respecting the beauty of ITALDESIGN's vision. Developing Finora was a series of first for us, from the arms extending from the backrest frame, to the super-thin backrest and new decorative panel for customization. There's a lot of components to Finora that are brand new to Okamura We put a huge amount of effort into creating the smooth surface finish on the decorative panels and making sure the panels fitted naturally into the backrest as a whole. We really feel the decorative panels help lift Finora to a new level. Okamura Project Team Engineer | Hiroshi Masunage - Yoshinori Isogai - Shunsuke Ishimaru
Finora embodies world-class functionality and a high level of customization with a futuristic, yet simple beauty.