Glass surfaces slump over solid, organic bases in this series of furniture by Paul Cocksedge, which was launched at this year’s London Design Festival.
Presented by Carpenters Workshop Gallery as part of London Design Festival, the Slump collection includes nine tables that pair industrial sheets of glass with boulders, concrete, wood and tubes of steel.
At each point where the tabletops meet their bases, the glass surface has been moulded to hug the adjoining leg below.
This creates the effect of “naturally occurring forms” like water from a stream flowing over jutting rocks.
Cocksedge worked with craftspeople in the UK to create each of the tables, stretching the glass under high temperatures and pressing it over large sections of rock, concrete wood or steel.
This creates the effect of the table legs being partially vacuum-packed, bringing what the designer describes as an “unexpected softness and fluidity” to the glass sheets.
As the materials react differently to this process each time, no two furniture pieces are the same.
While the Rock coffee table resembles a river running over a boulder, the base of the Bubble table, which is made from multiple patinated steel tubes, creates soft, water droplet-like indentations in the glass top.
Other pieces like the 4 Legs dining table have a more uniform and less naturalistic aesthetic, comprised of four cylindrical legs made from steel.
“This body of work is a reaction to my long-standing fascination with industrially produced materials,” said Cocksedge.
“Across the course of my career I’ve visited hundreds of factories, full of flat, rigid sheets of various materials – wood, metal, marble, stone or glass.”
“I’ve always felt that this flatness has a visual tension, and I wanted to explore how to relax and soften that, giving the material space to breathe out,” he continued.
Paul Cocksedge designs social-distancing picnic blanket for life after lockdown
“The pieces themselves are a simple visual gesture, but the process behind them was complex. The challenge was how to transform something that has been made flat and rework it, while avoiding putting ‘stress’ back into the glass.”
The Slump exhibition launched on 10 September as part of this year’s London Design Festival, which is taking place both in-person and online from 12 to 20 September, but the show will remain open until 18 December 2020.
The week-long event has also seen Heatherwick Studio create a modular desk with sculptural wooden planters for legs – a design that forms part of the Design Museum’s Connected: Made Together, Apart project.
Heatherwick Studio unveils modular desk with wooden planter legs
For last year’s London Design Festival, Cocksedge created an outdoor seating installation made from three concentric rings of undulating steel topped with scaffolding planks.
During the UK coronavirus lockdown, the designer turned his talent to creating a blanket that would allow people to “socialise safely and confidently” outdoors once restrictions have been lifted.
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