Edward Barber, Jay Osgerby
2012 - 2013
As the designers of the 2012 Olympic torch, they have already had their creations collected in an important monograph. Edward Barber & Jay Osgerby debut for B&B Italia with Tobi-Ishi, a round table that was based on a commission by the company to complete the tables range.
The fascinating result required a complex study of proportion and equilibrium. Its inspiration from the East is clear even in the name, which refers to the ornamental stones used in traditional Japanese gardens. The British duo were influenced by the compositional balance of these striking and elegant green spaces. The form of the table, which is distinguished by the cantilever top and bases that look different depending on the perspective, alludes to those smooth stones. With unexpected materials, it blends technology and handicraft. After considerable experimentation aimed at creating a granite look, today the table bases have cores in Baydur ® (structural polyurethane foam) and a wooden top. All the parts have been treated with cement grout to create a sort of superficial skin that recalls a history of high-tech craftsmans.
Several acknowledgements from critics and the media have shown interest in this product. Today, the Tobi-Ishi table revels in a new identity after being presented first in cement, then in London and New York in two contrasting marbles, white Carrara and black Marquinia. Here it is presented in two very different colours: a decisively bold Candy Red and a quieter, contemplative Smoke Blue. As it changes its finishes, Tobi-Ishi reminds us of its oriental roots through the glossy, almost mirror-finish lacquer. Its shapes seem softer, the bright colors make it eccentric and the blue makes it sophisticated without losing its iconic personality.
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