Modus launch recycled cork stool with 10% of profits going to MOVEMENT ON THE GROUND

— 07 April 2016

MOVEMENT ON THE GROUND is a foundation that responds to the humanitarian crises affecting the men, women and children forced from their homes by climate change, poverty and war.

Operating primarily on the island of Lesvos, arrival point for tens of thousands of people as they flee from armed conflict, poverty and persecution, MOVEMENT ON THE GROUND works with large and small charities, identifying need and providing structural and logistical support.

From spotters, searching for boats as they approach the coast and rescue boats guiding people safely ashore, to medical stations and mobile doctors, MOVEMENT ON THE GROUND helps provide safety, shelter, heat, food and water, getting the items that are needed to the right place.

It is a human response to a human crisis.

Michael Sodeau’s Casper is a simple stool made from recycled cork. Reminiscent of Gormley’s clay folk in ‘Field’, the stools have two finger holes so they may easily be lifted, these holes add a sense of character to an otherwise simple silhouette. The rounded base allows for some movement and the concave seat adds to the comfort. Available in a choice of natural or dark finish. Whether used individually or en masse the stools have a friendly charm.

It was the human element of the Casper stool that led us to consider it as a product that might help support the work of MOVEMENT ON THE GROUND. With its benign, sociable quality and expectant, almost hopeful expression, brought about by the two holes that enable its ease of movement, Casper has taken on a character of its own, a personality.

The human element is one that has become very poignant of late with the dehumanisation of those fleeing persecution, war and poverty, that quality of ‘personness’ reminds us that it is a human crisis unfolding despite the lexicon of governments and popular press.

Cork has a very low density and connotations with the sea; of course, it floats, bobs about directionless, it reminds us of a message in a bottle, of a person stranded and vulnerable, distressed and reaching out for human contact. Wider associations with the material itself seem to fit the desperation of the displaced, those without shelter, home or community.

10% of the profits from the sale of Casper will go directly to MOVEMENT ON THE GROUND helping to give displaced individuals their basic human necessities. Despite these serious themes, Casper has a playfulness, en masse the stool becomes humorous, connected, a crowd with a singular purpose, a community reunited.

Casper, is a fun stool with a serious purpose.

Casper is a true collaboration between design and refugee support. The stool cleverly highlights a key component in a crisis situation - eye contact. It is obvious Casper was a volunteer in a previous life.’

Dylan Ingham