This magnificent Capstan table from the Guinness estate in Ireland that I found in the the Baker Stately home collection changes in size from 70cm to 87 cm. Here is a quote from their catalogue -
-”The Guinness William IV mahogany Capstan dining table, the sectioned swirl mahogany top with fluted frieze, extending with eight additional stripe mahogany leaves, by a mechanical turning action similar to a ship’s wheel; the massive fluted central baluster supported by four curved and fluted legs terminating in fine cast and gilded brass toes. Irish circa: 1840.”
Capstan is nautical term for a vertical drum that turns around to raise or lower heavy objects. David Feltcher‘s capstan tables for yachts have price tags that are pretty heavy weight to lift, tens of thousands of pounds. It’s a justifiable price considering their high level of complex craftsmanship. The concept of capstan extensible round table is not a new one, but Fletcher Burwell-Taylor Ltd have certainly mastered it. You just want to have one to twirl it around all day long and listen to the music of the ball bearings .
As one drawer closes another drawer opens because of the air pressure forcing it out. It’s the internal system of the table that decides, not the person using it. You just can’t win. But the Corean designer Lee Sanghyeok did, he won second prize at Cologne 2012 with this table, where it’s your hands not your ear-drum, that feel the air.
There is definitely a 1980′s colour block style to the work of Victoria Wilmotte. It has all the feel of the Memphis Milano collection where these trestles would certainly be at home. She works materials with great rigour, throwing up unlikely combinations born out of functionalism and a constructive logic, with a dash of fun and showmanship. The character in her work emerges with the subtly controlled articulations of strong forms, in this cases the knee angle in the legs of the trestle, which make them appear to walk.
The Black legs are aluminium allowing them to carry the weight of a glass table-top, and the snugly fitting T beam is seamless speckled corian. Variants of the trestle are on her website. Victoria is still in her twenties and has already had some quite prestigious commissions. She trained in Paris and London and likes to travel, so I am sure that she has allot more to give.
Since writing this I read that she’s a fan of Ettore Sttossas (surprise, surprise), though her is work more “grown-up”, with a stronger interest materials and construction. I’m curious to see how her work will develop over the next forty years.
The Plane table of René Barthelemy’s Olika range is produced in Haute Sâone. The Beech plywood tabletop is glued in layers, creating the hollow bumps on the underside of the table-top which act as beams. This is supported by triangulated spindley brushed steel legs.
I was delighted to meet the “young” designer René Barthelemy. He began his business on returning to France after having lived for many years in Sweden. Olika means different in Swedish, that he is as he easily had a few decades on the other designers starting out but that certainly never shows in the freshness of his work. I just really want to hide things in the bumps under the table-top.
Originally designed for the Lloyd hotel in Amsterdam in 2004 by Serner.org (Christoph Seyferth), the Lloyd Pub table is produced by Functionals from Tilburg in Holland. Twenty years ago I had a summer job designing pubs. After designing everything else we would open a catalogue of pub tables and select something mahogany stained with brass details. Boy I wish this was in the catalogue!
The Lloyd table comes in six different colours and three different shapes. The legs are particularly well thought out. The tube part at the base gives a solid footing and the sheet steel part makes it flexible, so can be adjusted to an uneven floor. So now if you spill your drink it’s your own fault!
There is a stillness to Lindsey Goodwin’s paintings, a feeling of calm in the laid back luxury of well ordered dining rooms, her favourite subject matter. I was introduced to this young award-winning artist’s work by Tom Byrne, an Irish artist and curator who works for Galerie DDG on the Île St. Louis, where her work can be found. She is a driven painter from California, who gave up a full university scholarship to devote herself to studying classical painting. Her treatment is as refined and as rich the subjects that she paints, and these Internet images barely do justice to her skilful handling of light and texture.
The ritualised spaces that she paints are practically always devoid of people but are populated by formally set tables. The chairs, or the curtains or any other item could disappear from these scenes and it would change their feel, the way that they are. But remove the highly structured tables and it would change the essence of what they are, a magical pause, of anticipation and memory of the ritual of dining. A timelessness that emerges from the many hours that she spends absorbed before her subject.
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