Diffrient World is Humanscale's first foray into all-mesh task seating. Designer Niels Diffrient wanted to create the most minimal, full-function task chair ever made. With an innovative tri-panel mesh backrest that provides custom back and lumbar support and a lightweight design, Diffrient World is, like all of Humanscale’s products, simple, beautiful and functional. The design eliminates the need for traditional mechanisms, instead using the laws of physics and the sitter’s body weight to offer perfect recline for each individual sitter. Diffrient World offers the ultimate user-friendly sitting experience.

Niels Diffrient designed Diffrient World to offer ease of use and effortless functionality. With weight-sensitive recline that adjusts automatically and armrests that are attached to the back of the chair so they move with the user for ergonomic comfort, Diffrient World provides custom comfort for every sitter. A high quality, affordable task chair with minimal parts, Diffrient World was built with longevity in mind and will look as good in ten years as it does today.

Invisible Recline Mechanism

Diffrient World uses the laws of physics and harnesses the user’s body weight to automatically provide the right amount of recline for every individual, every time. Its groundbreaking mechanism-free recline action leverages two parts of the chair’s frame to provide automatic, balanced support throughout the full range of motion for maximum support.

Responsive Bracket

Diffrient developed the chair’s back using the laws of physics, which eliminates the requirement for a separate lumbar support, which tends to create a pressure point and requires manual adjustment. With patented Form Sensing Mesh Technology, the backrest perfectly conforms to the sitter’s entire back as if custom made for them.

Sitting on Air

A truly lightweight chair, Diffrient World replaces the standard cushion seat with a low-abrasion, non-stretch mesh. To maximize comfort, Diffrient eliminated the front edge of the chair, solving a perennial problem of hard edges placing pressure on the knees and contact stress behind the thighs, allowing long-term comfort and total supports for every sitter.


Monofilament Stripe (Black, Carbon, Platinum, Green, Atlantic, Amber)

Made specifically for our tri-panel, mesh-backed chairs, Monofilament Stripe has an elastic composition that achieves strength through its distinctive weave structure to provide unmatched support. Its classic stripe pattern is available in various striking colors.Mesh | Designed by Elizabeth Whelan

Silver Check (Alloy, Topaz)

Woven with monofilament and silver-plated yarns, Silver Check has a subtle metallic shimmer that creates a sophisticated finish to any chair. This non-stretch mesh is flexible and strong, providing ergonomic support to every user.Mesh | Designed by Elizabeth Whelan | Part of the Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum Permanent Collection

Pinstripe (Black, Cadmium, Citron, Crimson, Cyan, Graphite, Silver, White)

Inspired by the Brooklyn Bridge, Pinstripe explores the idea of “suspension.” Composed of two Monofilament stretch yarns, Pinstripe helps the chair’s tri-panel backrest cradle the user’s body and features a floating line of color for a distinctive aesthetic.Mesh | Designed by Elizabeth Whelan | Part of the Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum Permanent Collection

Dash (Platinum, Zinc)

Named for the way color dashes across the surface of this textile, Dash was designed to resemble embroidery floss. It maintains a strong, responsive and lightweight composition to accommodate the user’s every move.Mesh | Designed by Elizabeth Whelan

Catena (Black, Poopy Seed, Caraway, Bayberry, Cornflower)

Catena features a pure, clean weave—free of any additional patterns or motifs—in colors inspired by the rich hues of spices, which allow the chair to seamlessly integrate into its setting. It’s simple aesthetic makes it a classic design choice for modern and contemporary environments.Mesh | Designed by Elizabeth Whelan

Wave (Black, Graphite, Sage, Navy)

Soft and supple with a distinctively flexible weave, Wave is a four-way stretch fabric that creates a form-fitting layer on the cushion. Its deep earth tones are inspired by nature's hues.Textile Grade 1

Vellum (Black, Graphite, Ash, Light Gray, Seal, Beech, Mahogany, Moss, Grass, Navy, Periwinkle, Pomegrante)

Developed to withstand the most rigorous use, Vellum is a highly durable textile that features a calming texture. Made from strong materials such as nylon, codura and elastic yarn, it accommodates shifts in the user’s body weight throughout the day. Textile Grade 1

Ginkgo (Black, Charcoal, Walnut, Storm, Navy, Wheat, Green, Horizon, Harvest Orange)

A wool textile, Ginkgo is available in vibrant, saturated colors to complement any space. Its intricate weave structure creates a delicate, organic energy, for a robust and uniquely comfortable texture.Textile Grade 2 | Designed by Elizabeth Whelan

Lotus (Black, White, Shale, Hematite, Walnut, Umber, Ochre, Verdant, Navy, Plum, Crocus, Eggplant, Earth Red, Lucky Red)

Ideal for healthcare and hospitality environments, Lotus features water-repellent and easy-to-clean properties. Lotus has strong nylon backing and a polyurethane texture, bolstering its resilience and endurance.Textile Grade 1 | Designed by Elizabeth Whelan

Sensuede (Ebony, Pewter, Olive, Pear, Arbor, Persian)

Sensuede’s faux-suede finish features breathable wrinkle-resistant recycled ultra-fine microfibers that are extra strong for enhanced robustness. Its soft texture provides ultimate comfort.Textile Grade 2 | Designed by Elizabeth Whelan

Corde 4 (Dark Brown, Black, Graphite, Navy, Pumpkin, Parma Red, Medium Grey, Azure, Thalo)

Designed with a four-way stretch, Corde 4 provides sitters with ultimate comfort as they adjust positions. Its intricate weave structure, dimensional surface and wide array of neutral and vibrant shades are visually appealing and engaging to the touch.Textile Grade 1 | Designed by Elizabeth Whelan


Niels Diffrient

Niels Diffrient's designs are grounded in the philosophy that form follows function. His work has spanned generations, consistently looking past trends to reinvent the tools we use for daily living.

With an academic foundation in design and architecture and a degree from Cranbrook Academy, Diffrient channels his knowledge of engineering, architecture, and human factors into the creation of highly functional and aesthetically timeless designs.

From his early work with the studios of Eero Saarinen, Marco Zanuso, and Henry Dreyfuss to his current work with Humanscale, Diffrient's visionary talent has been widely recognized. Included among his many honors are the 2002 National Design Award from the Smithsonian's Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum, and the 1999 Chrysler Design Award. In recent years, Diffrient has focused his energies on designs for the office environment, particularly seating--a category in which he has pioneered numerous breakthroughs, from pneumatic cylinders for seat height adjustment to weight-activated automatic recline.



  • Chair Width 25.75” Arms / 21” Armless
  • Base Size 24”
  • Seat Height Range 14” – 30.75”
  • Recline Range 17° recline + 8° backrest tilt
  • Chair Weight 28 lbs arms / 24 lbs armless
  • Stackable: No

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