Italian designers Paolo Ulian and Moreno Ratti have created a collection of prototype products made from unwanted marble tiles.
All seven items in Ulian and Ratti's 40 x 40 series are made from one or two Marmette slabs – marble wall and flooring tiles pre-cut into standard sizes, the most common of which is 40 by 40 centimetres.
Each slab was cut by water jet to create a number of pieces that could be assembled into 3D objects without producing any waste.
According to the designers, huge numbers of the marble tiles are discarded every year because the veins are considered too prominent, because the colour is not quite right or because of minimal damage to the edges.
"Companies who work with this type of tile accumulate boxes and boxes of abandoned tiles that probably will never be sold," Ratti told Dezeen. "We decided to give them a second chance and turn them into pieces of furniture with dignity."
The designers started to investigate how they could use the Bianco Carrara marble tiles, and came up with the idea of making products from just one tile by cutting the parts and creating a three-dimensional form.
"Managed in the right way, water-jet cutting allows us to obtain all the pieces necessary to obtain the object from a single tile," said the designers.
The +O- Lamp comprises a two-dimensional lampshade form fixed into a perpendicular base in front of a light bulb and the hole it has been cut from.
The Gerla vase and fruit bowl and O-Ring fruit bowl are both made of concentric shapes that are stacked on top of each other and fixed using transparent glue.
The Gerla vase also features a natural decorative pattern produced by the water-jet cutting.
The Piet fruit bowl is formed by dividing the tile into four pieces and joining them at right angles to create a three-dimensional form.
Retaining the shape of the original tile, the Quadrondo clock has pre-scored corners that can be broken off by hand to change its shape from square to circular.
The SfridO coffee table and Layer stool are each made from two tiles. For the table, one tile is cut into two parts intersecting at right angles to form the base and the second tile forms the tabletop. The stool is stacked from rings and topped with another tile.
The collection is being displayed in Carrara until 3 August as part of Marble Weeks 2014.
Paolo Ulian and Moreno Ratti previously collaborated on a vase that is shaped by smashing off its edges with a hammer and pieces for a marble exhibition during Milan design week earlier this year.
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