New design: The Johann Bench

The Johann Stool’s big brother, the Johann Bench, is the latest addition to the Opendesk collection.

The Johann Bench is a longer version of the popular Johann Stool, continuing the original’s minimal aesthetic. This neat perch comfortably accommodates two people for meetings or lunch socials. Combine the Johann Bench with a Canteen Table for eating and meeting, or scatter them around a Lean Desk or Collaboration Table (as pictured below) for a more formal working set-up. Its light weight makes it easy to move and rearrange, making this design great for flexible workplaces.

The original Johann Stool was designed by Johann Aussage in 2014 as part of a research project with colleague and friend, Pierrick Faure - designer of the Roxanne Chair. The stool was offered as a “thank you” reward for Opendesk crowd-equity investors later that year. It’s since become a firm Opendesk favourite. Its simple, clean design makes it extremely versatile, equally at home as a lounge side table or meeting perch.

The Johann Stool with Thor ter Kulve’s Bundle Desk and Pia Narula and Sam Devenport’s Linnea Bookshelf

In 2017, Ben Baker, production manager at Opendesk set about designing a bench, based on the Johann Stool’s structure and aesthetic. In 2014, the manufacturing files for the Johann Stool were shared by designer Johann Aussage with a Creative Commons, Attribution, Non-commercial license. With permission from Johann, Ben was able to create a derivative of the stool by tweaking the manufacturing files he downloaded via the web. Through this, an entirely new design was created, with new functionality. Ben and Johann now share the bench with the world together and demonstrate the collaborative power of the Creative Commons.

Sets not singles

The Johann Bench is available in sets of two. We’re often asked why it’s not possible to request quotes on some items in quantities of one. The answer is based on the sheet materials from which Opendesk furniture is made. Sheet materials such as plywood typically measure 8’ x 4’ (2440mm x 1220mm) with other sizes available based on geography. To avoid wastage, Opendesk furniture is designed with these dimensions in mind. Components are nested (arranged on the sheet material) in the most efficient way possible to reduce the amount of material that needs to be disposed of after manufacture.

Two Johann Stool’s nest efficiently across half a sheet of 8’x4’ material.

Four Johann Stool’s nest efficiently across a full sheet of 8’x4’ material.

It’s a requirement that any furniture available on Opendesk must make efficient use of at least half a sheet of 8’ x 4’ (2440mm x 1220mm) material (4’ x 4’, 1220mm x 1220mm). This way, the half that is left over can easily be used by a maker elsewhere. Two benches nest snugly into half of a plywood sheet - with four sitting within a full sheet. As a result, the bench is designed to be ordered in pairs and made in multiples of two for larger orders. Whilst we realise that sometimes folks only want one of something, the minimum order of two is a constraint we’ve deliberately made - it’s all about seeking the most efficient use of material in our commitment to sustainable local making.

Want the Johann Bench in your home or workplace? Add it to your basket and Request a Quote from a local maker today!