‘Cactus Low Table’, 2021
STUDIO MANDA IS a furniture and interior design company based in Beirut. It is the joint enterprise of architect and designer, Georges Mohasseb, and interior architect, Kareen Asli, who met in 1998 in the Beirut practice of Gregory Gatserelia. In 2015 they set up in partnership, drawn to work together by a shared interest in experimenting with complex materials and highly skilled craft techniques.
This table has been created for this year’s Lake Como Design Festival. It forms part of the 20/21 section of the festival, laid out in the grand historical surroundings of the Palazzo Valli Bruni, which showcases the work of independent contemporary designers whose pieces reflect a creative dialogue between the 20th and 21st centuries. The table’s form is inspired by the cactus plant, but this idea is abstracted and transformed into a functional sculpture. The piece alludes to the history of nature-inspired design in the twentieth century, but with a distinctly twenty-first century wit.
To make the piece, the crushed and recycled marble is mixed with resin, and then poured into 3D printed moulds. As Asli and Mohasseb suggest, “We created this minimalist sculpture using old craft techniques, 20th century craftsmanship and materials, initiating a dialogue between the craft process and robotic technologies highly present in today’s design and manufacturing process.” The final touch up and finishes are all done by hand. This accounts for the organic liveliness of the piece – its sense of complex irregularity and vivid materiality.
Lake Como Design Festival 2021 runs from 6th – 10th October, 2021.
An online dedicated auction of 20/21 will run from October 1st – 10th 2021, on Catawiki.