Form, function—as one
Introducing Asari
Beauty in balance

The Asari Chair by Herman Miller is a study in duality: sculptural form and everyday function, upholstered and ergonomic, quiet and significant. Combined, it provides all the performance of an ergonomic work chair, in a form that is as comfortable as it is beautiful.

A group of eight Asari chairs by Herman Miller with height adjustable arms in all available colour flood options. There are five high-back chairs and three mid-back chairs.
Detail view of a high-back Asari chair by Herman Miller in dark blue leather with height adjustable arms

Behind the design

Naoto Fukasawa designed this chair with a clear goal: to inspire joy and create a new form, ultimately becoming the next upholstered icon. Considering the relationship between person, environment, and chair, Fukasawa looked to the world around him as inspiration—beginning with its name. Japanese for “clam” (short neck clam, to be precise), Asari’s rounded edges and sculpted segments give an anthropomorphic character to the chair. The smooth and calming surfaces of river stones and symmetrical tiers of a macaron influenced the sculptured prototypes Fukasawa and team hand-built to represent their vision of the design.

To turn the designer’s sculpted vision and forms into reality, our development teams needed to create new ways of constructing a chair. To achieve the clean stitching and visuals and ensure the chair would meet our rigorous standards, the team devised new methods to make the form.

The result is a meticulously crafted chair design where every form, stitch, and curve are essential: a purely iconic piece of furniture.

A first-of-its-kind partnership

To enable the elevated form Fukasawa desired and provide Asari with incredible softness, we partnered with Maharam to artfully curate three materials suited to the character of the chair: Meld, Luce, and Stow Leather. This is the first time an office chair by Herman Miller has welcomed such a focused partnership.

A multipurpose textile with universal appeal, Meld enlists a tight basketweave of luminous yarns to produce a flickering surface with light and dark variation. Offering the look and feel of wool, Meld is constructed primarily of post-consumer recycled polyester.

Woven in Italy, Luce has a rich palette derived from the post-consumer recycled wool of repurposed garments sourced throughout Europe. An offset twill weave lends grain to the surface, highlighting the depth of Luce’s heathered yarns.

Guided by the Maharam Design Studio’s material expertise and sourced at a boutique tannery in Northern Italy, Stow celebrates the inherent beauty of leather returned to a more natural state. Stow’s compact profile and soft hand eases upholster-ability while a protective topcoat provides additional resistance to staining.

Swatches of Maharam Luce, Meld and Stow leather in multiple colours folded against each other.
A group of three Asari chairs by Herman Miller all with height adjustable arms. Included in this group are a mid back light brown chair, a high back yellow chair and a mid back black leather chair.
Colourful characters
To bring Fukasawa's sculptural vision to life and truly celebrate Asari’s form, we applied a considered approach to colour called Colour Flood. Evolving the dipped-in colour approach used on other chairs, we carefully curated a palette of eight all-over hues to deliver character to the chair. This palette balances traditional shades like Black Leather, rich basics like Cocoa, and vibrant colour pops like Marigold. Whether you choose one of the Colour Flood options or a more traditional blended colour option, Asari has the perfect character for your space.
Designer Naoto Fukasawa sitting in a high back Asari chair in light brown.

We smile at the chair and the chair smiles back.”

More About Naoto Fukasawa