Milan 2010: international designers including James Irvine, Konstantin Grcic and Jasper Morrison have created a collection of marble furniture for Italian stone company Marsotto Edizioni, unveiled this week in Milan.
The series of almost 30 pieces are made entirely of CNC-cut white Carrara marble, which is then hand finished.
Photos are by Miro Zagnoli.
See all our stories about Milan 2010 in our special category.
Here is more from James Irvine:
I first met Mario and Costanza Marsotto 2 years ago. One of those happy meetings where we almost immediately found that we enjoyed working together.
I was put in touch with them to do a project for the Marmomacc fair in Verona, Italy. The biggest and most important marble and stone fair in the world.
It was a new environment for me. Incredibly exciting but at the same time rather daunting.
Above: Dino, dining table by James Irvine.
Marble, the material of the Romans and Greeks. The most noble of materials.
Above left: Ipe Tondo. Above right: Ipe Quadro, low tables by James Irvine.
Italy is full of the most extraordinary small companies with extraordinary skills. Marsotto like many others, is a company that has been waiting for their chance to glow. To test themselves, I like to say that they want to be Cicalas.
Above: Lino, low table by James Irvine.
Following our first project together, a series of circular discs on columns, we understood that there were fantastic possibilities.
Above: Mimmo, dining table by James Irvine.
Marble, in a sense a forgotten material, has been rediscovered over the past few years. Some extraordinary pieces have been realised.
Above: Pia, fruit bowl by James Irvine.
However they have always remained rather exclusive. As if marble is a material which is only for floors or masterpieces.
Above: Ponte, low table by James Irvine.
Marble is in fact a rather normal material in Italy. Why not try to do some accessable products, we asked ourselves?
Above: Disco, shelving by James Irvine.
Above all why not try to do pieces which are totally in marble? Not just the top of a table, or a chunky ashtray.
Above: Salto, low table by James Irvine.
Together we arrived at the idea of Marsotto Edizioni. A place to create products and not. A place for designers to realize their ideas.
Above: Squalo, door stop by James Irvine.
I knew that I had to call people who would be in tune with this idea to do real things, or at least this was the intention.
Above: Toni, dining table by James Irvine.
Together we have created almost 30 products. The designers are a mix of nationalities. German, English, Swedish, Japanese and Italian. The products created in white Carrara marble are made using CNC machinery and finished by hand.
Above: London, Paris, Rome, low tables with handles by Jasper Morrison.
What many people don’t know is that the marble from Carrara is 190,000,000 years old. Yes one hundred and ninety million years old.
Above: Sultan, reclined chair by Konstantin Grcic.
It is estimated that there are 60,000,000,000 cubic metres of marble in the mountains of Carrara. Put more simply that is 60 cubic kilometeres.
Above: Taksim, low table by Konstantin Grcic.
A lot of material hidden away and just waiting to be made into useful, and maybe not useful, things.
Above: Galata, low table by Konstantin Grcic.
Above: Melt, bookcase by Thomas Sandell.
Above: Tilt, console by Thomas Sandell.
Above: Atimo, stool by Maddalena Casadei.
Above: Aspetta, bench by Maddalena Casadei.
Above: Bella, table mirror by Maddalena Casadei.
Above: Pausa, rotating magazine holder by Maddalena Casadei.
Above: Marbelous, low tables by Naoto Fukasawa.