Alpina is a collection that indagates on the capacity of a matrix to mutate in order to concieve formal pieces of furniture. By operating on this matrix with a series of simple operations –trim, rotate, translate– with the sole premise of conserving its proportions, spatial relationships are stablished that define the function and identity of the furniture pieces. This matrix acts in all cases as the lateral structure, while the horizontal frames which contain the planes of support links and rigidizes the system.

The collection seeks to relate lightly to the spaces it occupies, not as volumes, but rather as a set of vectors and planes in the air. To achieve this, we decided to use solid steel rods instead of hollow tubes. As they have greater inertia, this allowed us to use smaller sections and in this way emphasize the slenderness of the lines. This decision generates a supposed contradiction since although the pieces appear to be visually light, they are considerably heavy.

Despite having a simple and minimalist character, the collection presents a series of details and slightly complex resolutions: each leg was drilled and threaded at its end to contain an Allen bolt that secures a 4mm thick piece of hard rubber, avoiding scratching the floor, as well as dampening the sound of the steel. On the other hand, as its put through another finishing process than the powder coat paint of the structure, the copper plated metal meshes are fixed by steel strips that hold them from its bottom surface and are neatly bolted to the horizontal frames. The rest of the plans are made from Guatambú plywood with a high pressure plastic laminate –Formica– which offers a long lasting, easy to clean and smooth surface.

The result of the investigation was a chair, a table, a desk, and a multi purpose shelf which were presented as the #01 Series, although other pieces could have been concieved with this same system.


Photography by Marcos Altgelt
Presented at Sight Unseen OFFSITE 2016, New York.