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The new Vitra x Bouroullec Brothers

Among its new products for 2023, Vitra presents the Abalon Sofa and the Joyn 2 desk, designed by Erwan and Ronan Bouroullec. Hybrid pieces, designed to correspond to new working methods.

Eager to create different types of spaces, the Bouroullec brothers started from the evolutions of work methods, all the more shaken up in recent years by the health crisis. Indeed, closed offices are no longer in fashion and the expansion of telecommuting is pushing employees to feel the need to gather around the same table during their presence. A new rhythm that requires innovative multipurpose furniture that can be adjusted according to the number of people present. “Working on this project with Vitra was an opportunity for us to move from an ergonomics of the person to an ergonomics of the space.”

Joyn 2, a version 2.0 in the era of time


A simple design, but one that makes it unique. Designed in 2002 for its first version, the Joyn table was conceived as a flexible platform with no predefined layout. It concentrates its activity around its surface, while accessories such as screens and pedestals can be attached and rearranged according to the situation. This modularity offers the necessary flexibility for individual and current needs. For this second version, the Bouroullec brothers imagined a more user-friendly model, whose functionality would not be fixed: We were looking to make structures that were open but basic enough that lots of things could happen in them. We need to stop stigmatizing objects with a pre-definition and establish a more universal language.

Joyn 2, design : Ronan & Erwan Bouroullec © Vitra

Beyond this social aspect, the question of the product’s sustainability was also at the heart of their thinking. The Joyn 2 system consists of solid wood table tops, cork screens and desk pads made from recycled leather scraps from Vitra furniture production. The legs are made of raw aluminum and the various plastic parts are made from recycled materials whenever possible.

Abalon Sofa, the organic sofa


For this new sofa, the idea was to propose a shape that would be more organic. The sofa retains the idea of an alcove, meaning that the high backrest allows the head to rest, a functionality with a double meaning. Firstly, it allows to maintain conversations, keeping an eye contact towards a person, a screen, a context. On the other hand, the body feels instantly protected and can therefore “privatize” a place in the collective space. Its curved shape creates a welcoming and attractive space. Easily accommodating three people, the front and back of the seats are upholstered in different textiles, available in several combinations and the base is available in three colors.

The Abalon collection, composed of the Abalon Plateform stool, the Abalon Table coffee table and the Abalon Sofa, design: Ronan & Erwan Bouroullec © Vitra

The Abalon collection is also accompanied by the Abalon Plateform, a stool or footrest depending on its use, as well as a table, the Abalon Table.

Maïa Pois