Smarin stacks cushions to create seating that looks like military defences

Recalling the sandbag barricades used in war zones, piles of haphazardly stacked cushions form this public seating installation by French furniture brand Smarin

Called La Barricade and designed by Stéphanie Marin, founder of Smarin, the seating is made up of large bean bag-style cushions that can be stacked to create soft walls and towering seating configurations that users can climb up and nest inside.

Designed to be moved around and rearranged, the cushions are made from grey linen fabric, filled with fibres and decoratively stitched at the seams. When immersed inside them, they provide a degree of acoustic insulation.

The cushions were originally designed to be used by the audience at a viewing of Narimane Mari's film, Le Fort des Fous, during German arts festival Documenta 14.

Located inside the Ballhaus in Kassel, the former residence of Jerome Bonaparte, brother of Napoleon, the seating made reference to the film's subject by referencing architecture that is emblematic of the violence.

Most recently, the Barricade seating was installed at an art exhibition called Halo during last months' Art Basel.

The immersive show was created by British artists Semiconductor and guest curated by Monica Bello for the 4th Audemars Piguet Art Commission. It took place at the Hadron collider (LHC), at the CERN laboratory in Geneva where visitors were invited to experience particle collisions.

The LHC housed a 360-degree projection of scientific data while simultaneously 384 vertical wires were played mechanically using the same data, to produce a soundtrack.

In this setting, the upholstered seating functioned as a place for visitors to lie back and take in the sounds and projections.

Smarin reports that the cushions will eventually be available to buy in both linen and outdoor fabric finishes.

Smarin weren't the only ones to bring bean bags to this year's Design Miami/Basel, designer Porky Hefer also showcased a series of oversized bean bags and hanging chairs that resembled different animals under threat in the wild.