The Furniture Studio

MADWORKSHOP x USC School of Architecture

Conceived by David Martin over a decade ago, the Furniture Studio at USC School of Architecture has become a key staple of the undergraduate curriculum. The popular class now has two sections each semester taught by Board Member R. Scott Mitchell and Program Coordinator John Uniack. The Furniture Studio teaches students how to build and weld. The Furniture Studio culminates with each student fabricating a full-scale furniture piece. Students with extraordinary designs can go on to become fellows of MADWORKSHOP and continue to develop their projects and bring them to market.

1. The Hyper Chair

By: Daqian Cao
Abstract, light, and comfortable, The Hyper Chair finds balance between abstract form and ergonomic comfort.

The hyperbolic paraboloid is a doubly ruled surface formed by 3/16” diameter steel rods. A Grasshopper script allows for accurate and immediate adjustments of both the 3/8” diameter steel frame and the mesh of Hyper Chair, achieving desired visual effects and ergonomic qualities.

+ Photos taken by Brandon Friend-Solis

2. The CAD Chair

By: Joy Han

Light + Simple + Comfort



3. Chair Six

By: Yuan Yao, Diana Yan, and Heeje Yang

Yao set out to create a minimal lightweight foldable chair, whose inherent ‘origami’ mechanism has elevated its design by reflecting its visual and spatial transformation.

His study began by mocking up a primitive sample that used plywood and piano hinges. This first draft of the chair used materials that were too thick, but allowed Yao to test the folding system by adjusting the hinges used to maximize stability. Once the folding mechanism was worked out, he could begin perfecting the dimension and refining the materials. Yao refined the chair by whittling away at the silhouette. His latest producible prototype has chrome-coated legs and a seat and back that can be neatly folded without any hindrances or distortion.

2017 Prototype

+ Photos by Brandon Friend-Solis

2016 Prototype – By Diana Yan

2015-2016 Prototype by Yuan



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