903 x 448 x 388 (mm) | 35.5 x 17.6 x 15.3 (inch)
This floor desk design is a part of “Making Modern and Contemporary Korean Style Project.”
For historical reasons, the look of traditional Korean furniture has stalled at the pre-modern stage. Although modernizing Korean furniture design has been the most urgent task for many Korean designers, there hasn’t come out any design that earned the public approval and popularity. I locate the flaw in their contrived effort to make the designs look Korean, which turned out unnatural or boring to the public.
A paradigmatic style completely subverts the conventional one by catching up to the historical changes in technology, value system, etc. I worked with this design by referencing only the modern-day value system, technology, and needs, as I believed that not being too attached to the past was the most natural way to come up with the design of the new generation. I am Korean after all, so simply remaining faithful to who I am would naturally lead to the design that would look distinctly Korean.
In pre-modern days, the desk served a double function: being a tool for reading or writing books, while at the same time maintaining the space of master or the person of superior status. At that time, the size of the room was small. Thus, the desk was made in a small size suitable for a small room, not too overwhelming or obtrusive for the owner of the room.
After the modern era, the desk became more of a tool for reading and writing, and the size of the room got bigger than before, so people wanted a larger-sized desk. As the writing method changed, people sat closer to their desks and wanted to be able to get their legs under the desk. So I took the storage space that went right under the top plate to the side and made a space under the desk.
The design of the desk, which would have both a legroom and storage space underneath, take an asymmetrical form. To achieve a visual balance, I gave varying thickness to the aprons as well.
Working between sketches, plans, and 3D modeling, I modified the slope of the surface, thickness of the wood, fillet and chamfer. Although the original plan had a detachable storage place, it was removed in the process, thinking that the whole thing may look too cramped.
RISD MID 2020