La Divina Commedia by Niels Van Eijk & Miriam van der Lubbe

Milan 08: Dutch designers Niels van Eijk and Miriam van der Lubbe presented a chiase longue and lamp made of hand-carved blocks of polypropylene.


The carvings, which are first cut with lasers and then finished by hand, are taken from illustrations of Dante's epic poem La Divina Commedia drawn by Gustav Doré in 1860.


The project aims to juxtapose old imagery, ideas and crafts with new technology and materials.


Photographs are by Studio vier/a Peer van de Krui.

Here's some more information from van Eijk & van der Lubbe:


La Divina Commedia - Old images on contemporary material, made with high tech production techniques and ancient crafts.

In continuation of the project Godogan, designed for Friedman Gallery New York and Droog Design, Van Eijk & van der Lubbe designed a new series of products where old images meet high tech production techniques and in which ancient crafts are combined with contemporary materials.


At the beginning of the 14th century, Dante Alighieri wrote the well known epic poem La Divina Commedia which is considered to be one of the greatest works of world literature. In this epic poem, Dante describes the Christian life after death, and this story can be seen as the medieval worldview of the western church. Although this might seem only a Christian story, Dante integrated the political struggles of that time. Still, the story of La Divina Commedia can be read as a nowadays critic on politics and translated into problems of society nowadays.


In the project La Divina Commedia of Van Eijk & van der Lubbe, different worlds meet as well. The Old illustrations of Gustav Doré, drawn in 1860 are known as the visuals of La Divina commedia of Dante. They have been reproduced in a high tech way by laser engraving on a contemporary material, polypropylene, and after that partially carved by craftsmen. It’s an estranged combination to have this story cut 3 dimensionally in plastics. In this way, it comes to live and at the same time it is brought into the 21st century.


Materials: polypropylene
Sizes: Chaise Longue LDC: 90 x 50 x 70, Hotspot LDC: 60 x 60 x 235
Techniques: Laser engraving, hand carving
Images (adapted): Gustave Doré