In late 2013, some designers in Berlin teamed up to help refugees who'd fled war in Northern Africa get settled and productive in their new home. Legally restricted from working as wage-earning employees, the refugees and designers formed Cucula, an organization that produces and sells handmade furniture.
Most awesomely, they sell furniture based on Enzo Mari's 1974 Autoprogettazione designs, which were originally only for DIY use. But Mari gave Cucula permission to make his designs, so long as it was refugees who made it, and refugees who would benefit from it.
Some of the furniture is made using wood from refugee boats which wrecked on the coast of the Mediterranean island Lampedusa. I find this Piet Hein Eek-y, but somewhat problematic.
Straight-up awesome though, is the Bambinooo, a kid-sized adaptation of Mari's iconic Sedia I chair, which has also been stretched to bench width. AND it has underseat storage. There are kid-size Sedia I chairs, and kid-sized Autoprogettazione tables available too, but at the very least everyone should get a Bambinooo. It is great.
Bambinooo bench, handmade from waxed pine, signed, 220 € [cucula.org, ht monique]
Cucula | the story [cucula.org]