In searching for an illustrious ancestor, at first glance one may associate the daybed Five to Nine by Studiopepe for Tacchini with the celebrated Tube chair by Joe Colombo, the quintessence of the same typology, minimalized to four simple cylinders in a structure that, in order to cut back on packaging, slide one into the other. Though it references the past, the sequence of rolled cushions found along its entire length gives a certain personality and a modern-day feel to the classic early 20th-century dormeuse. “It all started with the cushions: we liked the reference to chairs from the 1970s and wanted to reinterpret and reiterate them in an almost obsessive way to give shape to a contemporary furnishing element,” according to the designers Arianna Lelli Mami and Chiara Di Pinto. In fact, the wooden base is simply covered by eleven soft cylinders plus an extra one that can be transformed into an armrest or a backrest. It is intended to be versatile and multipurpose as well: it can be a chair for relaxing or for waiting; it can be used alone or in complex compositions (with the armrest that can act as a divider); and finally, it can adapt to both domestic or public settings.
What was the starting point of this project?
It was the cushion: we liked the reference to 1970s seats and we wanted to reinterpret and repeat it in an almost obsessive way to give shape to a contemporary furnishing element.
What about the name?
It’s a play on words compared to the canonical working hours “Nine to Five”, from nine to five, which indicates the part of the remaining day when you’re not working.
How do you combine multiple daybeds?
The armrest can be used as a seat divider, even if you decide to combine several daybeds to create a lounge area, for example. It can create articulated compositions enriched with different accessories, such as the round coffee table.
What makes you happy as designers?
Knowing that creativity is a resource that will always stay with us.
And what is your greatest fear?
The fear that this is no longer enough as a resource! And also not having the time to do all the things we like to do.
How do you divide the tasks in your study work?
Between us the roles are fluid, there is a lot of dialogue and dialectics. We try to have an agile structure that has worked a lot in this lockdown period and have an eclectic and trustworthy team of collaborators.
We love women designers very much because they have a special attention to the environment and the quality of spaces and the way of life.
A designer you admire? Why?
We love women designers very much, not because of a gender issue of course, but because they have a special attention to the environment and the quality of spaces and the way of life. I’m thinking of Charlotte Perriand for example... We saw her exhibition in Paris and it was very interesting to enter the world of this very special designer and also to deepen her controversial relationship with Le Corbusier, much more intransigent as a designer, and you really feel the contrast between two similar but also different visions. Personally [Arianna, ndr], I really love her research on organic forms, collected, catalogued and photographed together with her friend Fernand Léger. A practice that we also follow. After all, women are “gatherers”, in the anthropological theory of hunters and gatherers.
What object changed your life?
No one in particular, the objects are spectators of our daily life... Often they also have an active role, but changing your life is perhaps an exaggerated claim. I’d say, all things considered, the bicycle.
Why did you decide to become a designer?
We studied design at the Polytechnic for five years but we didn’t immediately become designers, or rather we already were designers, but not in a “traditional” way. We started by designing stories and settings, creating imaginary worlds in which design could live and be interpreted. Then we were in the mood for bespoke projects that many of our clients liked and so we started working as product designers. It was a necessity and maybe the best things are born in this way.
We started by designing stories and settings, creating imaginary worlds in which design could live and be interpreted.
If you could travel through time, which era (past or future) would you choose?
I believe that an era that brings together both are the 10s and 20s of the last century. Years of great experimentation and avant-garde, great ideals and ideologies. With the spectre of war always present, but with an incredible yearning for life. You only have to read the novels of the time to taste it.
- Product name:
- Five to Nine
- Year of production:
- Seat structure:
- Natural or open pore varnished wood
- Leather or mohair velvet