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yokyok’s anamorphic bench can make people appear big or small based on where they sit

11 January 2024


Design studio Atelier YokYok by Samson Lacoste and Luc Pinsard architects permanently places an anamorphic bench in Malicorne-sur-Sarthe in France that can make people seem bigger or smaller depending on where they sit. Anamorphic means the intentional distortion of an image or object. From an angle, it looks different. Stand in another space around it, and the object or image begins to make sense. The Anamorphic Bench follows the same context. It plays with perspective, stages the human body, and provides playful and educational street furniture. People sitting at different levels on the permanently installed bench appear at varying sizes. If viewed from the top of the rear, the Anamorphic Bench looks like a giant chair with a miniature human sitting on it, being looked at by a towering passerby. If viewed from the side, the bench then becomes a centipede street furniture with its bent legs, surfing surface, and a giant handle made of steel-like material. No back support is provided to create openness. Since the legs are uneven, drawn from their irregular shapes, they are part of the reason the optical illusion takes place. The phenomenon may occur more obviously in photography or by simply closing one eye. The Anamorphic Bench can be found in Malicorne-sur-Sarthe, a city in Northwestern France. yokyok anamorphic benchimages by Atelier YokYok


Materials were also a focus for the Atelier YokYok when they created the Anamorphic Bench. For its creation, it received the support and trust of the city of Malicorne-sur-Sarthe, where the street furniture is also located. To create the seating, YokYok employed what it calls Malicorne concrete which is composed of low-carbon cement, 100 percent natural pigments from Apt to evoke Malicorne’s clay, and pieces of Malicorne earthenware instead of gravel.
The design studio used the local craftsmanship of the city and included 35 kilos of broken plates and cooking ware, and rejected objects donated by the Art Faience Workshop of Malicorne to construct the Anamorphic Bench. All of its molds and concrete casting took place in Malicorne-sur-Sarthe at the city workshops in September 2023, and the design team was supported by Hoffmann Green Cement Technologies for the use of the bench’s low-carbon cement. yokyok anamorphic benchdepending on where the people sit, YokYok’s Anamorphic Bench can make them appear big or small yokyok anamorphic benchview of the bench from afar yokyok anamorphic benchthe irregular height and shapes of the legs help make the optical illusion happen yokyok anamorphic benchYokYok employed local materials or Malicorne concrete composed of low-carbon cement yokyok anamorphic benchthe design studio included 35 kilos of broken plates and cooking ware, and rejected objects into the bench