Basalt desk accessories by Jeonghwa Seo originate from a Korean island

South Korean designer Jeonghwa Seo has designed a collection of desktop accessories made of Jeju Island basalt by local artisans, with shapes referencing the volcanic landscape.

Basalt deskware series by Jeonghwa Seo
Bookend

The Basalt range by Jeonghwa Seo comprises a paper weight, coasters, a bookend, a pen holder, a pen tray and a business card tray.

Each is carved from natural stones by craftspeople in Jeju, the largest island in South Korea, and given an underside coating of black acrylic to prevent scratching the desk surface.

Basalt deskware series by Jeonghwa Seo
Bookend

"I was interested in the quality of local materials," Seo told Dezeen. "Especially the materiality of the basalt, which gave me lots of inspiration for this project."

Basalt deskware series by Jeonghwa Seo
Card tray

"The island has a long history of stone craft, but recently the craftspeople don't have enough work to do with their skills," he continued. "I wanted to make consistent work for them by designing useful and marketable objects."

Basalt deskware series by Jeonghwa Seo
Card tray

The flat hexagonal coasters and hexagonal prism paperweight mimic the island's coastal rock formations.

Basalt deskware series by Jeonghwa Seo
Coasters

Triangular forms seen in the pen tray, bookend and business card holder reflect the 386 volcanic peaks on Jeju Island, itself formed as the result of a volcanic eruption off the southern coast of the Korean peninsula.

Basalt deskware series by Jeonghwa Seo
Coasters

The pen holder, with a trio of slots for writing implements, is based on "jeongjumeok" – stone pillars with three holes made for supporting wooden bars. These pillars stand either side of pathways that lead to homes on the island, named "ollae", and act as gate posts.

Basalt deskware series by Jeonghwa Seo
Paper weight

"This collection is focused on promoting the local material and craft," said the designer. "The objects are already in production by craftspeople in Jeju, so I hope this product can be successfully launched to the market so that [they] can continue."

Basalt deskware series by Jeonghwa Seo
Paper weight

The packaging for all six items reflects the strong geometric shapes and monochrome colour palette of the collection.

Basalt deskware series by Jeonghwa Seo
Pen holder

The range was developed as part of a design project supported by the Korea Craft and Design Foundation, a public institution founded to establish the identity of Korean creative arts.

Basalt deskware series by Jeonghwa Seo
Pen holder

Previous projects by Jeonghwa Seo include a collection of stools and tables made using 12 different materials in 15 different combinations, and a range of benches that explore the structure and shapes of seating.

Basalt deskware series by Jeonghwa Seo
Pen tray

Photography is by Yohan Ji of Unreal Studio.