Nigel Coates’ Capriol dining chair is charged with the animalistic energy of a roe deer

Developed by the British architect and designer for his Viet-Now collection, the design combines natural curves and Vietnamese crafts with Coates’ own unique aesthetic.

by Jerry ElengicalPublished on : Jul 24, 2021

Named after the Linnaean genus assigned to the European roe deer - Capreolus - the Capriol chair by British architect and designer Nigel Coates exudes the spirit of its namesake with elegant, curved rear legs that seem poised to spring forth into the wilderness. Developed by Coates as part of a larger design collaboration with the luxury furniture design brand Sofia called ‘Viet-Now,’ the Capriol chair combines elements of Vietnam’s traditional crafts with the designer’s own classic sense of style, peppered with idiosyncrasies and nature’s raw vivacity.

<em>Capriol’s</em> curved hind legs are charged with a sense of
Capriol’s curved hind legs are charged with a sense of "animal energy" Image: Courtesy of Nigel Coates

“The chair is part of a collection I'm doing with a company in Vietnam, which is quite a big collection of cabinets, sideboards, tables, sofas, and armchairs,” shares Coates in a conversation with STIR. “I've been working on this collection with my Vietnamese partners now for three years. The dining chair is named Capriol after a kind of deer. So, it has the spirit of a kind of elegant animal,” he adds. In the same vein, each piece in the collection captures a unique archetypal spirit, taking cues from Vietnamese craftsmanship and reinterpreting them in an eclectic display of colour and materiality with subtle yet dynamic variations.

The dining chair is part of the <em>Viet-Now</em> collection developed by Coates | Capriol Chair by Nigel Coates | STIRworld
The dining chair is part of the Viet-Now collection developed by Coates Image: Courtesy of Nigel Coates

Capriol, in particular, is loosely based on the Tuscan rustic chair, with ‘naturalistic lines’ evoking the lithe posture of a roe deer. “The back legs are charged with energy. I like to make furniture that has an animal energy in it - or a human energy,” Coates remarks. The lightness and refined, austere appearance of the chair design contribute to the high degree of functional comfort it offers, while being simply pleasing to the eye.

  • Loosely based on the Tuscan rustic chair, <em>Capriol</em> possesses a refined elegance in its naturalistic lines | Capriol Chair by Nigel Coates | STIRworld
    Loosely based on the Tuscan rustic chair, the Capriol possesses a refined elegance in its naturalistic lines Image: Courtesy of Nigel Coates
  • Coates traces the chair’s origins to his Hanoi visit back in November 2019 | Capriol Chair by Nigel Coates | STIRworld
    Coates traces the chair’s origins to his Hanoi visit back in November 2019 Image: Courtesy of Nigel Coates

In the designer's view, the project’s origins can be traced back to a visit he made to Hanoi in November, 2019. As the pandemic began in March the following year, Coates and his collaborators continued to work on the collection. The British designer who is currently based in Siena, Italy explains, “There's a spirit in this collection where I try to use aspects of Vietnamese culture as touchstones, like in the references to traditional lacquer techniques, although the colours have gone a bit wild.”  

02 mins watch British architect and designer, Nigel Coates, sheds light on the story behind Capriol and his Viet-Now collection | Capriol Chair by Nigel Coates | STIRworld
British architect and designer, Nigel Coates, sheds light on the story behind Capriol and his Viet-Now collection Video: Courtesy of STIR

The chair’s base measures 45cm x 38cm, with the backrest rising to a total height of 83 cm. A number of colour and material options for both the frame and upholstery are provided in the design catalogue, including choices between frames of natural walnut, black, or white shades, along with upholstery in either seagrass, or beige, black, and camel shades in leather. Natural, grainy textures in the walnut finish option, combined with the expertly done wood carving evident in the form of the chair’s frame, impart even more of an earthly feel to the piece, almost reflecting the patterns of fur seen on the roe deer.

The wooden grain of the walnut frame further forges connections with nature | Capriol Chair by Nigel Coates | STIRworld
The wooden grain of the walnut frame further forges connections with nature Image: Courtesy of Nigel Coates

In his conversation with STIR on the design and experience of the exquisite chair, Coates fondly reminisced that the Capriol chair’s conception was a response to his own experience of travelling to Vietnam and soaking up an entirely different atmosphere during his 10-day sojourn there. He adds, “I didn't imagine that Vietnam would be quite that inspiring. There's a bit of me in the chair and a bit of Vietnam - particularly from the people who made it.”

Coates believes that the chair is a combination of his own personality as well the cues from Vietnamese crafts he picked up during his trip | Capriol Chair by Nigel Coates | STIRworld
Coates believes that the chair is a combination of his own personality as well the cues from Vietnamese crafts he picked up during his trip Image: Courtesy of Nigel Coates

Comments

Comments Added Successfully!

About Author

Recommended

LOAD MORE
see more articles
2517,2554,2629,2443,2522

Keep it stirring

get regular updates SIGN UP

Collaborate with us

This site uses cookies to offer you an improved and personalised experience. If you continue to browse, we will assume your consent for the same.
LEARN MORE AGREE