Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Liquid Glacial Table by Zaha Hadid

David Gill Galleries in London have been hosting the latest release by Zaha Hadid: the updated version of the Liquid Glacial Table.
This prototype is deemed to be the undisputed protagonist of interior design: fruit of a deep re-elaboration of fluid dynamics, the flat table on top is a complex flux of waves and ripples, which are not touchable but still can be looked through thanks to the transparent glass. This vortex of waves dramatically terminates with the table legs, which just look like miniature waterfalls.

The interest in the concept of fluidity is one of Zaha Hadid’s trademarks, who in this piece applied all innovations of design, materials and technologies to elaborate a credible succession of waves. The outcome indeed is quite impressive: the vortex created by each leg is breathtaking - an intense, glacial, frozen-like waterfall.  Despite the purity of the concept and the simplicity of shape, the main peculiarity of this table is the complex, fluid dynamic that winds its way through the whole design.

When the first version of the Liquid Glacial Table was launched in May 2012, it was short-listed by the Design Museum as one of the ‘Best Designs of 2012’. It’s not hard to predict a further ovation for this new version. 

Porthole by Martin Kastner

I'm pretty sure that this particular scenario has happened to you as well: go to a restaurant and love the dinnerware so much to want to take it home with you.  The discovery by some customers that the object of their desires was not available to purchase in the market, led them to leave bars with some Portholes less at the closing time. We’re talking about a mind-blowing piece of design and here’s why Martin Kastner, founder and principal of Crucial Detail design studio, had to turn is custom design for Aviary (Grant Achatz’s restaurant and cocktail bar in Chicago) into mass production.

The Porthole is a decanter for infusions that maximizes the glass surface to appreciate the colors, herbs and everything that is infusible in a liquid. The idea of creating a standing canteen-shaped vessel was born during a conversation between the designer and the Aviary bar chefs preparing for the grand opening of the venue. They were talking about fast infusions, cocktails that are in constant evolution while served, and Kastner thought that what we really want when having such drinks is a window into another world, another space and time. Then, the inspiration for the design directions came from the movie “The Fabulous World of Jules Verne” by K. Zeman with its submarine porthole.

The materials were chosen according to the need to make an easy-to-use and extremely appealing piece of pure design. The Porthole is an infuser made of stainless steel and tempered glass with low iron content and food grade Delrin, which holds up to 390 ml of liquid. Each Porthole is equipped also with a set of three stainless filters of different sizes and a flexible silicone cap that can be used to seal the vessel containing “long-term infusions”.  Martin Kastner previous experience in material design and metal sculpture helped him to understand better what he wanted from this product. The Porthole shape is curvy and asymmetrical, but deep down is just a flattened bottle that breaks the rigidity and the narrowness of a usual infuser. It is a window on tastes and flavors, that leaves you decorate your infuse while it’s laid flat to fascinate your eye before your taste buds.

The Porthole history is signed by an incredible success that brought Kastner to launch a KickStarter campaign to found the production and commercialization of the product. Porthole convinced more than 4000 supporters and was fully founded in two hours from its launch and went on raising more than four times of the budget initially needed.
Kastner’s Porthole is now produced by a highly experienced and capable manufacturer and is dishwasher safe, durable and super easy to use. Porthole is an ensemble of ideas brought to life, an object where aesthetics meets functionality.

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