Confluences by Philippe Nigro



Cologne 09: furniture manufacturers Ligne Roset presented a collection of seating by designer Philippe Negro at IMM Cologne this week.


The range consists of brightly-coloured, upholstered lounge chairs that fit together, appearing to cuddle up to each other.


IMM Cologne continues until Sunday.


Here's some more information from Ligne Roset:

“How can one design a settee which satisfies the requirements of the majority of users? Different people have different physiognomies. And then  there is the subjectivity of taste. CONFLUENCES is a  ‘reconciliatory’ settee, since it draws its inspiration from such differences”. CONFLUENCES attempts  to supply an answer to an ergonomic problem, and in this way becomes a playground for plastic forms and colours in many shade variations.

CONFLUENCES is doubtless one of the bedrocks of the new trend for‘counterforms’, with its characteristic overlapping arrangement of elements in the style of a puzzle or yin-yang. CONFLUENCES is a breath of fresh air which breaks with all  the normal conventions of upholstered furniture. This piece will please not only lovers of radical design, but also all those who are seduced by a multiplicity of possible sitting positions, and the as yet unheard- of conviviality offered by its colourful, unbridled compositions with evocative names such as the ‘Toi et moi’ (‘You and me’) love seat, the ‘small conversation settee’ and ‘large conversation settee’, or the 4-seat settee with two integral chaises longues.


At first glance, CONFLUENCES appears to be the fruit of the designer’s creative musings on the theme of uncompromising volumes. And yet, one will be amazed to discover that it is simply the result of a reasoned approach on the part of the designer, with a view to offering the best possible response to customer demand for personalised comfort.

Philippe Nigro: “How can one dream up a settee capable of satisfying the greatest possible number of users? Their body shapes, their tastes? The CONFLUENCES settee unites them all, for it draws its inspiration from variety.”

One possible answer was to offer a variety of seat depths and back heights on a single settee, in order to match the comfort with the expectations of the individual user. This approach naturally came with the disadvantage of having to make varying proportions work in a harmonious way in terms of form.

The success of CONFLUENCES, inspired by contemporary art, rests on the repetition, addition and direct stringing together of different volumes. In this way, a number of seats offering a variety of sitting positions are brought close and locked together; simple, almost neutral lines are used in order to enable the formal fusion of their volumes: the seat platforms flow together, overlapping each other as if in a giant puzzle, connected by nuances of shade.


Without symmetry and without any visible regularity, this principal is endlessly usable and makes it possible to create a wide variety of pieces, all of which both different and surprising, almost with a life of their own: 2-seater, 3-seater, 4-seater with lounge seat, fireside chair, Vis-à-vis.

“In so far as it attempts to solve an ergonomic problem, CONFLUENCES becomes a plastic and colourful way of playing  with countless permutations’’.


Each piece of CONFLUENCES seating unites varying seat heights and seat depths and offers new, entirely unstructured forms in  the service of a great variety of sitting positions and personalisation of comfort, supported by a well-considered combination of varying densities of foam. The personalisation is so extensive that the left  and right-hand versions of the 3-seater with lounge seat are not exactly

The mobile occasional table, which can also be used as an armrest, is quite deliberately an asymmetrical, unique piece, whilst the lumbar cushions, filled with pure down, also contribute to the general adaptability and freedom of use. Finally, the colour combinations chosen underscore the unstructured nature of the CONFLUENCES seating. Each item is available in a monocolour or multicolour interpretation. Philippe Nigro himself has suggested 27 possible colour combinations in  a variety of covering materials.

Construction: seat in 3 layers of criss-cross panels and panels of multi-ply; back in mecanano-soldered steel clad in polyether foam and polyester quilting. Invisible feet in black polypropylene.

Comfort: suspension of back via metal mesh. Seat and back cushions in polyurethane Bultex foam clad in polyester quilting.

Sofa end table H 38 x 35 x 35 in 6 mm black curved anodised aluminium set on jack feet. This becomes an armrest/tray when equipped with an optional cushion H 13 x 37 x 37. Lumbar cushion filled with pure duck down.

Cover · Baguette stitching. All items may be disassembled and have removable covers. All items are offered in a monocolour interpretation in INDIANA and DIVA hide, or in the fabrics listed below, or in a multicolour version choosing from one of designer Philippe Nigro’s 27 colour selections using the fabrics DIVINA, ALCANTARA, TOPAS, PAUSE, SUDDEN, CODA, CURL or PURE.

Design Philippe Nigro

His innovative creation, very like a puzzle, makes possible a hitherto unprecedented multiplicity of configurations, whilst demanding extreme sophistication in terms of production techniques – something which is only possible thanks to Ligne Roset’s many years of manufacturing expertise.

Philippe Nigro was born in Nice in 1975; he graduated from the Ecole Boulle, Paris in 1997, and now works both as an independent designer and as assistant to Michele de Lucchi, creator of the legendary Tolomeo light (1987).  In 2006, he collaborated with Michele de Lucchi on three new lights for Artemide.

Philippe Nigro has already undertaken an extremely wide variety of projects: He has worked not only for prominent furniture manufacturers such as Poltrona Frau, Felicerossi, Danese, Alias, Urifor and Nube, but also for brands from other very different areas such as Olivetti, Compaq, Telecom Italia, the Italian postal service and Van Cleef and Arpels.

On to this background Philippe Nigro expresses the full richness of his creativity in the shape of CONFLUENCES, his new collection of upholstery.

Posted on Sunday January 25th 2009 at 2:15 pm by . Copyright policy | Comments policy

  • zuy

    Roset turn innovative concept in nice furniture

  • charlotte

    hmm this is quite cute actually .. cuddling sofa’s!
    I like it !
    (except for the shiny fabrics)

  • zuy
  • tommi

    indeed, seem very warm & would be nice to have them home~

  • Student

    Creative and very human….

  • kingmu

    We could all use a bit more of ‘togetherness.’

  • David Klemmer

    The last one looks very cute. Strange to talk like this about Interiour design, but it looks like a peaceful familiy is hanging out together in front of tv.

  • sis

    love it

  • amsam

    So very very fresh, so functional, I love this. I’ve never seen it done before but now I feel like it should be done all the time. I want them.

  • Less Please.

    You have tapped in to my brain with this one. Separate together forever!
    More Mr. PN, more.

  • step_out_of_a_triangle_and_into_striped_light

    are you serious!? i have seen this idea many times before. i won’t bother mining for a link as i’m working. Just thought that i had seen this many a times….even in student work. hardly original

  • looks chaotic

    … but orderly – just the way i like it.

  • Nathan

    I really enjoy the ariel view shots, but the heavy/chunky base is not doing it for me.

  • Jimbob

    Looks like Delta graffiti pieces. nice.

  • jens

    thanks for the link Zuy, i think the original versions with the intersecting parts in a third color, is really beautiful… that’s what mass production and cost reduction does to designs i suppose…

  • Celine

    ABSOLUTELY LOVE IT, they look like sofas giving each other hugs! Sooo romantic and heart warming! They almost bring a tear to my eye! Great! Thanks Dezeen:)

  • Less Please.

    who said anything about orignal. the beauty is in the cerebral affect. you sit on your color field seeming separate yet find yourself connected to another. if you have seen this before then kudos, you are alive and one with design history. Rename, reclaim! Something familiar, yet enough not the same.

  • step_out_of_a_triangle_and_into_striped_light

    oh shove it!

  • Kat

    Could be great to have such sofas at the colleges, universities and institutions. Definitely will make easier the communication between students and also teachers :)

  • gives you a feeling of comfort immediately. the colors chosen are also soft and comforting. all in all great design with good thought.