milan design week 2017: international practice MAD architects has revealed the ‘mogu’ chair, its latest collaboration with renowned furniture brand sawaya & moronioriginally created for a large-scale public art initiative, the design was intended to be neither public furniture nor sculpture but somewhere in-between. with further developments, the upgraded version presented during this year’s event utilizes different materials and manufacturing techniques that redefine the correlation between the chair size, format and adaptability. 

exhibition space of the ‘mogu chair’ during milan design week
images courtesy of MAD architects



influenced by the smooth, contoured forms of fungi, ma yansong from MAD architects has conceived the chair for sawaya & moroni as a cluster that can be arranged in limitless ways. in other words, ‘mogu’ can be aggregated into social zones and scattered across public spaces like mushroom caps — supporting the needs of different users. this creates alternate readings of its form and a playful subdivision of spaces. shaped by a gentle but ambiguous topography, the chair offers a liberal interpretation of use as opposed to the straightforward relationship between a chair and its user.

polished black model of the mogu chair



‘it is a pleasure to collaborate with sawaya & moroni on this unique design. mogu’s form appears to grow naturally from the earth, adapting to diverse spatial configurations, and affecting the perception of its larger environment. its surface forms an organic landscape that allows people to respond with their bodies and encourage a variety of social interactions,’ states ma yansong. 

the chair’s smooth outlines reference the shape of a fungi 

mogu chair 3D rendering 

diagrammatic interpretation of the design 

the cluster effect

ma yansong and paolo moroni 



project info:


design team: ma yansong, dang qun, yosuke hayano, andrea d’antrassi, and felix amiss
manufacturer: sawaya & moroni