Open Call: ArtBar Seat-Making Workshop

4 day workshop exploring materiality and gesture in seating
16-19 February 2016

  • Etienne Marey
  • COS timber material



This workshop explores the process of furniture making, thinking about how seating can be created by examining behaviour scenarios and spatial environments. Questioning the interaction between object and user, we will focus on the idea of how objects evoke physicality.

Leaving Your Trace

This workshop welcomes participants of all backgrounds, and was designed to challenge the limits of interdisciplinary furniture making. After a day of presentations and discussion about the possibility of gesture presented by objects, you will work in groups to design a custom family of seats. You will be challenged to make seats from recycled wood, donated by COS stores for the ArtBar project. Each seat will have its own identity, and go on to live in the ArtBar.

Special Guests

We have invited speakers from a range of backgrounds – experts in their respective fields – to offer unique perspectives on the expression of movement in furniture making.

  • To introduce the project, the creative director of COS, will explain the brand’s approach to interior design in the COS flagship and concession stores worldwide, striving to maintain the principle of honesty in materiality.
  • Royal College of Art Interior Design students Tiphaine Dugast, Lucy Sanderson and Christina Huber, who have designed and delivered the ArtBar refurbishment, will present their winning project; discussing the process of corrupting and experimenting with material.
  • A human interaction sociologist, whose research specialises in the field of non-material culture, will first introduce us to the study of the gestures, norms, and symbolic interactions that form our daily communication.
  • A Fashion illustrator will present how using various techniques of collage, line experimentation, embroidery, and textile manipulation can capture physical movement and discuss the process of observation and noise.
  • For the making sessions that follow, an expert on the use of the Japanese hand saw will teach the groups the basic sculpting techniques of using this dynamic, traditional tool, as well as how to test the integrity of the seat.
  • On the final day each stool will be stamped and signed by each maker.


• Make a unique seat for the Art Bar
• The seats must be moveable, comfortable and connectable, resulting in a collection of stools, high stools, blocks and chairs
• All the seating will be made from piled timber and larch flooring, donated by COS
• The leg structure of the seating will be provided


To apply, please fill out this form.
• 4 day workshop
• 35 places available, open to all students
• A mix of lectures, conversation, group activity and making – hosted by a selection of thinkers and makers
• All materials and tools (Japanese handsaws) will be provided
• Please ensure you are wearing clothes that you don’t mind getting dirty, and proper footwear, ie, no flip flops or sandals
• A one off fee of £20 to cover costs of materials and tools must be paid before the start of the workshop, and will apply as a non-refundable deposit


Darwin Workshops, Floor 2
Royal College of Art,
Kensington Campus

SU ArtBar x COS Project
The Art Bar project is a collaboration between COS and the RCA Student Union. Designed by MA Interior Designer students Tiphaine Dugast, Christina Huber and Lucy Sanderson.

Screen Shot 2016-01-18 at 19.04.42

Download the PDF Timetable Here



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