Japanese designer Yusuke Seki has conceived a new furniture collection for the Adidas Originals Flagship Store in Harajuku, Tokyo. The project follows a commission to remodel the footwear try-on area and social lounge space.
To reflect the unique history and culture of the city, Yusuke Seki proposed an arrangement of couches made of asphalt blocks. By placing some of these blocks on rugs, the design plays with the juxtaposition of interior and exterior materials.
Asphalt, or the street surface, is the one material that sneakers are in almost constant contact with, and was thus considered appropriate for a sneaker lounge. Moreover, asphalt plays a particularly large role in the urban life of Tokyo. In contrast with cities in Europe or North America, where there is often a strict separation between sidewalk (for pedestrians) and asphalt (for vehicles), in Tokyo the relatively few sidewalks means that people spend most of their time on asphalt, sharing the space with other users.
In addition, lacking living space, many Tokyoites keep personal items such as plants and furniture out on the street – asphalt, in effect, is an extension of the living room. This resonates with the function of the sneaker lounge as a space for relaxing and interacting.
all images © Takumi Ota