Ziba Design Thursday 07 Jul 2011

The JumpSeat is a low-profile folding seat by Ziba Design, designed to fit in an auditorium with unusually narrow risers, and complimentary of a minimalist interior. It offers an elegant, modern alternative to the typical movie theater or stadium seat, with an innovative design and use of materials that let it support up to 600 pounds when opened, yet fold up to a thickness of only 3.5 inches.

The seat's unique opening mechanism was inspired by both the human spine and the folding seats used by attendants on aircraft. By pairing the compressive strength of plywood with the tensile strength of sheet steel, it creates a cantilever that bends reliably to the correct sitting angle and automatically snaps closed when out of use, without the use of additional hardware or springs. Its single bracket-and-bolt mount installs in 30 seconds or less, and the seats stack efficiently for storage and shipping, with 10 fitting in just 3 feet of vertical space.

The slender profile and neutral palette make it far more appropriate to modern interior environments than existing stadium seating options. The lack of an obvious support structure evokes a rare sense of delight and astonishment; users are often inspired to ask "That's a chair?" and "How does it stay up?" on first viewing.

The construction demonstrates extraordinary attention to detail: alternating angle cuts in the plywood spine prevent pinching a finger between the slats, and the wool seat cover sling attaches with hook-and-loop closure, for easy removal, cleaning or customization. Yet the simple palette of materials and straightforward fabrication process means the JumpSeat can be replicated in any well-equipped furniture builder's shop.

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Ziba Design