Made of connected wooden slats, a new chair from Brooklyn-based RockPaperRobot instantly morphs between seated and portable forms.The Ollie Chair is a transformable and portable seat that extends with gravity and retracts with a simple pull of a string.

The chair’s tambour seating surface is made of connected wooden slats that allow the chair to ‘magically’ morph between seated and flat profiles. Simple to both open and close, the Ollie Chair entices you to sit and relax as much as it enables you to get up and go, says RockPaperRobot.

Traditionally used in roll-top desks, a tambour is a flexible surface made up of wood slats adhered to a textile canvas, says the company. Using a tambour as a seating surface is an innovation that gives the Ollie Chair its unique movement and shape-shifting abilities.

When pulled, a string found on the chair’s back instantly retracts the chair to under two inches wide – providing low-profile storage. It can be stored flat on a wall.

At 16 pounds, the chair is lightweight and easy to transport. Featuring the option to swap out seating surfaces, the chair can be customized to suit individual preferences.

“The chair’s patented transformability relies on origami techniques developed for folding thick materials,” says RockPaperRobot on its newly launched Kickstarter page. “By adding offsets and incorporating hinge constraints to aluminum sheet metal, we engineered a structure that deploys to standard seating dimensions and flattens down to under 2.25” deep. That’s thinner than the bagel you had for breakfast.”

Leading RockPaperRobot, and Ollie Chair designer is Jessica Bank, a roboticist, designer, and inventor – who founded RockPaperRobot in 2009 to specialize in the invention of kinetic furniture, lighting, and robotic installations. Banks also designed a "Float" table - a matrix of “magnetized” wooden cubes that levitate with respect to one another. Veneered in Mappa burl, the repelling cubes are held in equilibrium by a system of tensile steel cables.
 
As of yesterday afternoon, nearly $20,000 had already been pledged for the Ollie Chair campaign, which has a goal of raising $80,000.

With headquarters in Brooklyn, New York, RockPaperRobot is an engineering and design firm that combines art, decor, and technology.