BEETLE IN 3D VENEER
In 2013, GUBI and GamFratesi introduced the Beetle Chair to the world, and a modern classic was born. Now, a decade later, the studio has reimagined their landmark design concept in 3D veneer – giving the Beetle a bold new natural expression and further emphasizing its status as an archetypal design, open to interpretation in any number of materials.
PRECISE DETAILING AND GRACEFUL FORM
The Beetle has always involved a high degree of skill to produce, but with the veneer edition, GamFratesi has introduced an even greater level of craft. The meeting point of the two shells, as well as the junction between the wood and the upholstery, underline the craftsmanship that has gone into the chair, as well as emphasizing its precise detailing and graceful form. The thickness of the shell varies: wider at the points of connection, to allow for greater strength, but thinner at the edges to preserve the iconic silhouette.
3D technology enables designers to produce organic shapes that were once impossible to create. This molding technique is uniquely able to create the Beetle’s distinct curvature using veneer, while maximizing its comfort and flexibility. This required an extensive process of experimentation to perfect. Transforming the veneer from flat surface to three-dimensional form also introduces depth and texture to the material, emphasizing the vertical grain and color of the wood, and giving the chair a premium appearance and a natural character.
The veneer edition takes the organic, nature-inspired form of the original Beetle shell, and adapts it to accommodate the realities of working with veneer. The result translates the Beetle’s distinctive curves into a molded wooden shell, giving the chair a new material aesthetic without compromising the comfort for which it has become renowned, and expanding the design’s relevance to even more interior settings.
“The design language of the Beetle Chair lends itself to be rendered in wood, which underscores the Beetle’s ‘inspired by nature’ story. Wood is a fantastic, warm, and natural material and the Beetle in 3D veneer manages to express the best of these aesthetic characteristics. The shell has always been a design feature; the shape of the Beetle is graceful, perfectly curved. Veneer is the ideal material to mold into this organic form – the three-dimensional shape enhances its grain and color.”
Stine Gam and Enrico Fratesi, GamFratesi
A MODERN CLASSIC
In nature, the beetle is highly versatile and adaptable. Likewise, GamFratesi’s design has proven extraordinarily versatile, allowing the creation of an expansive and ever-growing furniture family. Thanks to the adaptability of its original design language, the Beetle Collection has grown to include chairs for every function.
GamFratesi has been working with GUBI since the inception of their studio and the development of the Beetle Chair. With their own dual heritage, Italian Enrico Fratesi and Danish Stine Gam share GUBI’s ability to synthesize seemingly opposing ideas – the classic and the contemporary, the intellectual and the sensual, the understated and the expressive, the manufactured and the unique. These juxtapositions, as well as the boldness and curiosity that drives their desire to find inspiration in unfamiliar territory, are epitomized in the new veneer iteration and the wider Beetle Collection.