Zero-waste stool named chair design winner for MPavilion 2022

Sep 13, 2022
  • Article by Charlotte Huston

Drawing inspiration from all(zone)’s billowing and striking canopied structures in its MPavilion 2022 design, Re-pete is a lightweight chair with sustainability at its core.

Designed by University of Canberra trio Sam Tomkins, Ian (Max) Maxwell and Dr Ben Ennis-Butler, Re-pete is the 2022 chair design commission for MPavilion – selected from more than 40 design submissions and a shortlist of five finalists.

From left to right: Tomkins, Maxwell and Ennis-Butler.

The MPavilion chair is one of the key commissions of the MPavilion season. It is designed to support Australian designers and elevate their career portfolios. Past commissions include Nüüd Studio, Board Grove Architects, Chris Connell, Carme Pinós, OMA, craftspeople in Mumbai (India) and Sean Godsell.

“We are overwhelmed to have an opportunity to contribute to the amazing culture that the MPavilion has fostered over so many years,” says Ennis-Butler on his joint commission.

“It is such a unique event that uses design as an instrument to catalyse public debate, and to contribute to that, even in just a small way, is so exciting.”

Re-pete by Sam Tomkins, Ian Maxwell and Dr Ben Ennis-Butler.

Lightweight and zero waste, Re-pete receives its namesake from its composition. It is produced from recyclable polyethylene terephthalate (rPET) plastic using robotic 3D printing technology.

Inspired by Bangkok-based architecture and design practice all(zone)’s MPavilion commission, Re-pete is a complex doubly-curved shape, which serves not only unique visuals but also functional stability and suspension in all the right places.

Translucent and highly textured, the stool’s membrane appears animated and plays off light while casting spectrums of colour.

Render of the canopied structure by all(zone).

Demonstrating a circular approach to design, Re-pete also celebrates the aesthetic and functional possibilities of emergent material techniques and robotic fabrication technologoies.

MPavilion founder Naomi Milgrom says this year’s MPavilion by all(zone) is “designed as an environment where people can feel at home in the world”.

“The brief for the 2022 chair was to be responsive to this human centred design process and approach, with material experimentation to be a key consideration, and Re-pete certainly delivered on this,” says Milgrom.

“It is also zero waste and can be melted down again at the end of the season, so it’s 100 percent sustainable, which was another non-negotiable in the brief this year.”

Re-pete is translucent and highly textured.

The 2022 MPavilion Re-pete chair will be on display as part of Craft Victoria’s upcoming exhibition The Chair from Saturday 10 September.

The chairs will be used for talks, concerts, workshops and general gatherings throughout the MPavilion season, which runs from 17 November 2022 until 2 April 2023.

The full MPavilion program will be announced on 17 October 2022.

Photography by Nick Burrows.

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