Designed by Alvaro Uribe Design, the Plum Bench is the third in a collection of designs that explores the creation of structural forms with Carbon Fiber. The Plum Bench is a concept that organically combines structure, form and material into one. Inspired by aerobic and martial dance movements the gesture of the bench takes a very elastic posture with and elegant profile.
The name Plum is a derivative of the Spanish word “Pluma” which translates “Feather”; hence, capturing the essence that by combining new material, form creation and structural logic, you can accomplish incredible lightness. Measuring 64” wide, 20”deep and 16.25 height the bench weights an 7.5pounds. Advances in materials and manufacturing technologies are giving us a new freedom to create not from strict geometries, but from usability needs and sculptural approach. For this reason the form of the bench is designed to have strategic ribs where pressure and weight will be applied. By folding the material to create ribs, the bench structure is able to accomplish supreme strength and lightness. One long rib travels from side to side giving the main surface the strength necessary to hold 500 pounds. Similar to the stem of a leaf, or the shaft of a feather, these ribs give additional resistance to pressure and compression.
Using state-of-the-art material and technologies the bench would be made of tri-axial carbon fiber. This composite is capable of providing incredible strength, five times greater than steel on an equal weight basis. From a materials evolution perspective, we as human beings have always prioritized the relationship between high strength and low weight. Fibers such as wood, bamboo, skins, and other natural composites have provided strength through fixtures and additives. Only up to now, through integrating digital form creation and manufacturing technologies are we able to develop this kind of synergy between design, structure and material, eliminating all fixtures and hardware.
The Bench is the third in a collection of designs that aim to explore these concepts. The Plum Stool Series 1 and Series 2 both have been awarded the prestigious Red Dot Design Award and used by BMW to introduce their BMW-i8 and BMW-i7 Series cars in China as samples of the advantages and accomplishments of using carbon fiber.