Note Design Studio creates Core and Remnant seats as opposite poles


Spanish furniture brand Sancal has released Core and Remnant, two coordinating ranges of seating from Note Design Studio that play with negative and positive space.


The designs, which are part of a larger collection called Emptiness matters, are all based on the same basic shape.

But while the Core sofas and armchairs have a solid base Stay the lounge chair is hollow, resulting in opposing but complementary designs.

Core (top image) and Remnant (top right) explore ideas of negative and positive space

The products were designed as explorations of negative and positive space, terms commonly used to describe interiors and architecture.

Thus, Note Design Studio approached the furniture design process in the same way as a space project.

“We have a space, so what do we fill that space with,” the studio asked. “What happens when we remove matter from space? What is left? “

“One thing gave way to another and eventually we had a whole range of ideas and spatial forms that we started to refine in furniture.”

White armchair by Note Design Studio on a burnt orange pedestal
Remnant’s hollow design is inspired by architectural weight distribution techniques

For the Core range, Note Design Studio drew inspiration from sculptural design practices to create the impression of seats carved from a single block of material.

The Remnant armchair, on the other hand, resembles the outline of a seat rather than a seat itself, which presents a considerable challenge for the design team.

Man sitting on a mustard yellow Remnant armchair by Sancal
Each model has a curved, quilted back and is available in different colors

The apparent weightlessness of the seat is obtained using a triangulated metal structure.

This was inspired by architectural weight distribution techniques and, according to Note Design Studio, it took “a fair amount of development, experimentation, and engineering” to perfect.

The Core and Remant ranges both feature quilted backrests and are available in a variety of fabrics and colors, including mustard yellow, dark green, and light gray.

“The idea was to not focus on anything, especially the negative space surrounding physical objects,” Note Design Studio said.

“By recognizing this void, it becomes just as important a design element as the objects themselves.”

“While positive forms are often associated with strong, active qualities, negative space is calm and peaceful and leaves room for interpretation,” the studio added.

“Our thesis was that the juxtaposition of these two relative spaces would bring something new and stimulating to a room.”

Void Matters collection designed by Note Design Studio for Sancal
Both ranges are part of the larger Void Matters collection

Core and Remnant were shortlisted in the seating design category at this year’s Dezeen Awards.

Other nominated projects in the category include the Puffy Lounge chair, created by Faye Toogood for Hem, and a cantilever chair by Jasper Morrison, made from recyclable polypropylene rather than steel.


Joseph E. Golightly