Patricia Urquiola on the T-Table by Kartell

By Virginia Gardiner / Published by Dwell
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T-Table stands for transgenic table.

It is an object that seems to have grown naturally in plastic while acquiring some alien genes. It is a technological fossil. The design is in a direct contrast with the usually clean-edged plastic objects that we know. The nature-inspired design, together with the crisp transparency and soft colors of the plastic, create a dialogue between natural and artificial reality.

The decoration of the table is not superficial but becomes clearly structural. The T-Table is a hybrid between a molded and an extruded product. The main technical challenge consisted in the fact that the top and the legs had to come out of a single mold, which greatly determined the design.

What most struck me in the process of developing the T-Table together with Kartell was the beauty of the steel mold, the tool that allows the injection of the table. It is a piece of art of its own, shiny and of an extreme precision. It is the negative of the object in which the emptiness generates fullness. It calls back the sensations of my childhood on the beach, building sand castles with a simple plastic bucket. The industrial context is completely different, but I like to think of my professional reality in a playful way.


Virginia Gardiner


Our "Process" queen Virginia Gardiner currently lives in London, where she is finishing up a master's degree in industrial design engineering. "It has been fun but also tiring," she reports. "I spend a lot of time in the workshop with glue and other stuff on my hands and have recently been casting lots of shapes in horse poo from the horses that trot around Buckingham Palace. But we have to make stuff with a market, so I'm working on a new waterless toilet.

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