- Project team: Miro Roman, Luka Vlahović
- Collaborators: Petra Tomljanović, Iskra Filipović
- Year: 07/2010
- Location: Jarun, Zagreb, Croatia
- Dimensions: 250/100/45 cm
- Type: bench
The primary characteristic that determines the design of a bench in a natural enviroment is interrelation between a man and nature, which serves both as inspiration and challenge. Jarun Lake, one of Zagreb's green oases, provides natural surrounding that manages to put that relationship into balance. While thinking about the concept of the bench, we have been guided by the design that implements the idea of domesticity and ecological self-sustainability – a new version of a wooden bench. It is a bench made of wooden logs of various shapes and sizes. With a touch of irony and nostalgia, the name, “Newton’s bench”, refers to the story about the discovery of gravity. The “Newtonian” element, a somewhat unexpected part of a bench, is an apple tree that grows as an integral part of the form. A bench as a seat, a tree as its back, a tree top that provides shade and fruit to indulge in – these are the main advantages of the proposed design. Complete indulgence in hedonism and revitalization of the relationship between nature and the user!
The construction of the bench requires the use of wood in the shape of logs and apple trees. Tree planting raises environmental awareness: the tree is symbolically returned to the nature after being appropriated for the construction of the bench. The tree is a warning sign that indicates the necessity of self-sustainability. The logs, providing warm material that corresponds to the idea of Jarun Lake as a living room, are widely accessible and financially affordable. The basic shape of the bench is a parallelepiped whose upper surface is a topography, intended to serve as a back or an arm rest and to suggest different positions: sitting, lying, reclining... The strong pattern created by the upper surfaces of the logs visible as circles of various sizes, shapes, age (growth rings), colours, textures, correspond with the dominant longitudinal sections of the logs along the edges. There is an emphasis on maximal individuality of each constructive element, which is a product of natural diversity. “Newton’s bench” offers a sophisticated type of relaxation: connection with nature in every moment, while the apple tree, from the time of Adam to the Apple era, provides shade and pleasure. Besides, an apple tree is a symbol of the Original sin and the place which inspired Newton to discover the law of gravity, so who know what might happen to you...