Throne | Alfred van Elk industrial design
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  • symposion-gorinchem-throne
  • symposion-gorinchem-throne-top-detail
  • symposion-gorinchem-throne-chair
  • symposion-gorinchem-chair-detail
  • symposion-gorinchem-throne-wood-connection
  • symposion-gorinchem-throne-wood-construction
  • symposion-gorinchem-throne-middle-part
  • symposion-gorinchem-throne-structure
  • symposion-gorinchem-throne-pen-and-hole-connection

About This Project



Multiple truths.

A seating object out of 288 planks and 32 wooden pins, designed by Alfred van Elk, comprising four thrones that face each other: ‘In my view there are multiple truths.’


Alfred van Elk: For art event Symposion Gorinchem, in relation to the central theme of “Utopia”, I designed a sculpture, consisting of four thrones that face each other. The design reflects my concept of an ideal society, and symbolises wisdom and truth. The object is made out of 288 wooden planks connected with 32 wooden pins.

When I was asked to design something around the ideal society, I found it interesting. Because what is an ideal society, and what isn’t? That leads you to consider your own truth and other people’s truths, which is very topical.
In my view there are multiple truths and multiple beliefs. I don’t like dogmatic thinking and don’t have a strict view on how things should be designed; I am not for a manifesto. Freedom is the best thing there is. And that is what this object is about. Actually it is an anti-utopia.
Initially, functionality does not play a role in art, while it does in product design. I am not an artist but a designer and product design is not art. And perhaps that is why the result is an object that can also be used.

At the inauguration at the time, I ended up talking to then Queen Beatrix. Of course she is the one with experience when it comes to thrones. That my design contains four of them really appealed to her as it offers the possibility for multiple points of view. Even Queen Beatrix felt that the one sitting on a throne does not necessarily hold the truth’


Symposion Gorinchem


Alfred van Elk
industrial design


Leo Krol




Alfred van Elk
industrial design


Camphusianum Gymnasium
The Netherlands

Alfred van Elk