Global EngagementUC HomeAbout UCUC AcademicsUC AdmissionsUC AthleticsUC GlobalUC HealthUC LibrariesUC ResearchNews


Student’s Chair Project Featured on Design Super Sites

A chair design he completed as a student has earned recent graduate Cody Stonerock coverage by design super sites like

Date: 3/6/2011 12:00:00 AM
By: M.B. Reilly
Phone: (513) 556-1824

UC ingot   Even though he is now working as a professional designer, recent University of Cincinnati graduate Cody Stonerock is receiving international attention for a student project completed as a junior in UC’s College of Design, Architecture, Art, and Planning (DAAP).

Stonerock, 23, of Columbus, Ohio, and a 2010 graduate from UC’s nationally and internationally ranked industrial design program, has been receiving coverage from specialty design media and interest from around the world for a chair project he designed in his junior year.
Kurven Chair
Kurven Chair by Cody Stonerock

The project, a tradition at UC, requires industrial design undergraduates to incorporate three of five Japanese design elements into the construction of a chair – cleverness, craftsmanship, compactness, asymmetry and simplicity.

Stonerock designed and constructed the Kurven Chair, a furniture piece made from Italian poplar, white oak veneer, fiberglass, plywood and leather. The materials and shape were inspired by the curve and form of a sailboat. He states, “The sweep of the wood of the chair is inspired by the form of old sailboats. The leather that stretches across the frame to fashion the seat was inspired by the netting that goes across the frame of a catamaran.”

To allow for ease of assembly or disassembly – as well as multiple seat material options – the leather seat can easily be attached or detached from the chair. The leather is gathered into loops at the ends, and the loops are attached by being placed through slots in the wood and anchored with a dowel rod. The leather is backed with a canvas material to prevent stretching.

Stonerock, who is currently working for IA Collaborative in Chicago, a design innovation firm that he co-opped with while a UC student, has received coverage for the design from such design outlets as
“The best part for me,” he says, “Is that this was the first really complex thing I tried to design. There was a lot of area for detailing, for meticulous work or for messing it all up.”
Kurven Chair

Fortunately, he adds, everything worked out. “I was extremely happy to see it come together, to come to life as a working chair after constant work and countless hours to build the molds for the chair. I learned that you have to be very patient with the process and make sure all the details are worked out before beginning construction.”

Stonerock is pretty sure he got a good grade on the project, mostly because he admits he’d definitely remember if he’d received a bad grade. But perhaps the best result of all are the design readers who have seen his chair online and have subsequently written him to see where they could order one.

“That’s a really nice compliment, and I might try to produce or license the design at some point,” he says.

But for now, the Kurven Chair remains a one-of-a-kind.