Design criteria for the production of upholstered living room furniture founded on Asante traditional stool

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Asante traditional stool is nothing but a wooden seat of artistic design for practical use. The introduction of chairs by the Europeans have taken over the popularity of the Akan traditional stool which every Asante (Akan) had many of these seats (stools) for use in his house, have lost its dominance to the European chair because of its modification according to the current living conditions, customs, needs, tastes and even the simple functional beauty of contemporary furniture and interior design which is in harmony with our scientific age in which emphasis is placed on precision and the accuracy of shapes, contours and proportions. This existing situation brings about a way of broadening the scope of developing the skills of designing new forms of living room upholstered furniture from the Asante traditional stool and further more enlighten users on the meaning and significance of Adinkra symbols incorporated in the upholstered living room furniture. The researcher employed qualitative research using the descriptive and exploratory (studio/ practice based) methods; the descriptive method was used to describe the procedures and processes of constructing the upholstered living room furniture founded on the Asante traditional stool. The purposive sampling was used to select the sample size. The researcher used interview guide and observation as data collection instruments for the study. In light of this, the researcher observed that Akan traditional stools are exhibited flashily; others, though superficially similar, were so sacred that they are concealed from all but selected few. It was also observed that ordinary stools (nkondwa) were used by common people and the king. Chief’s stools tend to be large; women’s stools are smaller than men’s; and a spirit-medium stool were covered with white Kaolin. Finally, educative programmes, seminars and workshops are recommended to be organized frequently to educate designers and furniture practitioners on the need and the standards of quality design and the materials to be considered before transforming the Akan traditional stool into living room upholstered furniture.
A project report submitted to the School of Graduate Studies, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Master Of Philosophy In Integrated Art (Wood Working Technology)