Let’s try something super quick. Take a second and imagine a table. Don’t think too hard. What comes to mind? I’m guessing it’s some combination of the following component parts: a smooth surface and legs. Am I right? Ingo Maurer turned that natural assumption on its head for the Floating Table, his first collaboration with British brand Established & Sons, eliminating the legs in favor of built-in chairs that hold the flat top aloft on their arms.
Yep, this is the same Ingo Maurer whose name is synonymous with edging-on-art lighting fixtures. Since the German-born designer debuted his first lamp in 1966, he’s been a leader in manipulating new tech for his sculptural illumination, so this piece of furniture is a bit of a departure--but no less of an interesting creative approach.
At first glance, the round or rectangular options look fairly straightforward. Then--hang on. Each of the four seats situated around the perimeter has a uniquely crafted outer arm that can extend out from the table’s edge resting above with a little help from some incognito mechanisms, allowing guests to edge into their places gracefully. The seats don’t allow for too much movement in terms of swiveling, fidgeting, or tipping back after a big meal, but c’mon--it wouldn’t hurt to have a reason to sit up straight.
Floating Table is part of the E&S Principal Collection, which features a host of other high-profile collaborations from a veritable who’s who of contemporary design--Barber Osgerby, Konstantin Grcic, Jasper Morrison, The Bouroullec Bros--taking chances with unconventional approaches to old standards.