Seating islands are furnishings that can be placed freely in space, and usually provide seating access from more than just one direction, which often leads to formally daring designs. Garden seating islands are usually more informal than their office counterparts, and as such serve mostly for relaxation and rest.
For instance, Wolf Udo Wagner’s ‘Univers’ for Fischer Möbel is a modular, bulky seating island whose plastic components can be arranged to form classical arrangements, such as large sofas, but can also be arranged into loose seating landscapes. Conversely, Giò Colonna Romano’s ‘Giò Pouf’ for Slide is a low, round, internally illuminated cylinder from translucent polyethylene. Jangir Maddadi Design Bureau’s ‘Compound Foam’ is a series of independent seating islands that that can be joined, separated and composed at will.
Some seating islands, such as Francesco Rota’s ‘Island’ for Paola Lenti are minimalist affairs featuring a tubular steel base and a large, square top that is upholstered in rope fabric; while some, such as Patricia Urquiola’s ‘Tropicalia’ seating island, are woven from colourful synthetic threads and include a canopy for shade and privacy. Luca Trazzi’s ‘Ufo’ for Schönhuber Franchi is an aptly named, round, woven seating island.
Fabio Novembre’s ‘And’ for Vondom is a modular seating island comprising curved and looped sections that can be assembled into a formally expressive ribbon, while Asobi’s ‘isle lounge’ for isle lounge is a tilted, shallow bowl supported by 4 legs made of epoxy carbon fibre. Mikkel Hjort’s and Thomas Nolan’s ‘Fit Station’ for out-sider is an irregular, robust volume with steel handles that can be used for exercising as well as casual seating. Lastly, DEDON’s ‘Swingrest’ is a seating island that literally floats in the air: it is a large swing with a broad, woven seat and comfortable cushions, and forms a playful addition to any outdoor living space.