SYDNEY, POWERHOUSE MUSEUM / Permanent Collection

Sydney, December 2012: The Ray Chair by Antonio Pio Saracino has been acquired in the Permanent Collection of the Powerhouse Museum in Sydney.

“The ‘Ray Chair’ is an excellent example of contemporary international furniture design that follows the growing trend that looks towards the natural world for inspiration. In the case of the ‘Ray Chair’ it is the growth of crystals in which he finds his inspiration. The inspiration for his other chairs including the ‘Clover’ and ‘Blossom’ is self-explanatory but antlers, bones, and microscopic cellular arrangement have been nominated by him as his muse for others designs.

The designer of the ‘Ray Chair’ is rising ‘star designer’, Antonio Pio Saracino, an Italian-born architect and designer who lives and works in New York and Italy. While very much representing 2010, the ‘Ray Chair’ has its ancestry in the designs by renowned fellow-Italian designer, Joe Colombo (1930 – 1971). Colombo’s schemes for his ‘Additional Living System’ (1967) and the ‘Visiona’ ‘habitat of the future’ concept (1969) similarly took advantage of polyurethane foam’s sculptural freedom and captured the essence of a particular time – in Colombo’s case – the 1960s. ” Paul Donnelly, curator, design & society (September 2012)

The ‘Ray Chair’ is part of a limited edition designed by Antonio Pio Saracino. The Ray Chair was developed from an exploration of structural components found in the natural world, adapted as an expression of design. It is constructed from a cellular assemblage of multiple strips of rubber foam and then coated with an elastic polymer skin. This chair exists as a visual contradiction – it looks as hard as a gemstone, but in fact it is soft and comfortable. When viewed from above, the Ray Chair is reminiscent of a composition of pixels and also resembles the way crystals are formed.