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Seat, Zaishu 'Looking for water', designed by Matthew Butler and Julie Paterson, 2004
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Object statement
Seat, Zaishu, 'Looking for water', wood / paint, designed by Matthew Butler and Julie Paterson, made by Zaishu Pty Ltd, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia / Sydney, New South Wales, Australia, 2004-2007
Zaishu is a Japanese-inspired, print-decorated plywood seat of laser-cut components that can be flat-packed and assembled without glue or nails. Zaishu was conceived by the Australia designer Matthew Butler of Bluesquare design in 2004 and launched using stencilled street artwork at the Australian Centre for Contemporary Art in Melbourne. Since then the commercial Zaishu range has expanded to include versions of the stool printed with 1970s wallpaper designs by Florence Broadhurst, botanical prints by Melbourne-based Spacecraft Studio and abstract designs by Julie Paterson of Cloth, Sydney.

An important aspect of Zaishu has been the 'Zaishu Project', an international initiative based on a number of collaborative, interactive projects with artists, designers and communities in Europe and India. This international dimension to Zaishu has been described by Butler as 'a program of participation, creativity, responsibility and evolution...an international collaborative event, recording patterns, designs and cultural texture from around the world on sheets of plantation-grown veneer.' Several of these projects, notably those in Sweden and India in 2006, have also generated revenue for charitable causes.

Zaishu is a particularly interesting product for both its innovative, sustainable design and adaptability to different decorative patterns, but also because of the international scope of its artistic, community and fundraising activities. Zaishu is about involving individuals and groups in the creative process of design and promoting consciousness-raising ideas about the accessibility and social and environmental responsibility that should be inherent in all good design.

'Looking for water', the most recent Zaishu edition, is an abstract pattern designed by textile designer Julie Paterson of Cloth, Sydney and inspired by Australia's drought: 'The teardrop motif reflects the shrinking dams and the deep scars that the livestock make as they walk the same track leading to water.' (Julie Paterson)
Seat designed by Matthew Butler in 2004 and print designed by Julie Paterson of Cloth, Sydney. Made by Zaishu Pty Ltd in 2007.
Acquired direct from maker.

 This text content licensed under CC BY-NC.

Description
Seat, Zaishu, 'Looking for water', wood / paint, designed by Matthew Butler and Julie Paterson, made by Zaishu Pty Ltd, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia / Sydney, New South Wales, Australia, 2004-2007

Stool-style seat of five flat, rectangular sections of hoop pine plywood slotted together and printed with an abstract design in three colours. The seat can be dismantled to flat pack.

Designed: Butler, Matthew; Sydney; 2004

Designed: Paterson, Julie; Sydney; 2004
2007/160/1
Production date
2004
Height
405 mm
Width
440 mm
Depth
296 mm

 This text content licensed under CC BY-SA.
Acquisition credit line
Purchased 2007
Subjects
+ Australian furniture
+ Australian graphic design
+ Environmental impact
Short persistent URL
Concise link back to this object: http://from.ph/376396
Cite this object in Wikipedia
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{{cite web |url=http://from.ph/376396 |title=Seat, Zaishu 'Looking for water', designed by Matthew Butler and Julie Paterson |author=Powerhouse Museum |accessdate=31 October 2014 |publisher=Powerhouse Museum, Australia}}


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