Alain Gilles designs "strong graphic presence" for Contour furniture collection

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Milan: Contour Tables for Vincent Sheppard by Alain Gilles

Alain Gilles designs "strong graphic presence" for Contour furniture collection

Brussels-based designer Alain Gilles will debut his new coloured-steel table collection at Milan design week, which gets underway today.

The Contour tables – which were designed for Belgian brand Vincent Sheppard – sit on tubular steel frameworks that are intended to stand out in any room.

Milan: Contour Tables for Vincent Sheppard by Alain Gilles

They have interchangeable tops of smoked glass or slatted wood.

Available as smaller round side tables or lower and longer versions, the furniture has been designed to create a "strong graphic presence", whatever angle it's seen from.

Milan: Contour Tables for Vincent Sheppard by Alain Gilles

Gilles kept details to a minimum, instead focusing attention on the tables' line-drawn metal structure. He used a similar tactic for his recent Mass tables, which featured tubular steel supports in the style of crinoline petticoats.

Milan: Contour Tables for Vincent Sheppard by Alain Gilles

The designer, who opened his own studio in 2007 after spending five years working in finance, has also designed several pieces of furniture for Italian brand Bonaldo. These have included an extendable table with an exposed mechanism and furniture with brightly coloured sloping legs.

Milan: Contour Tables for Vincent Sheppard by Alain Gilles

He's also turned his attention to homeware – rethinking traditional kitchen tools for Evolution – and created fin-shaped sound absorbing screens that shield office workers from noise.

His Contour collection will be on display at Salone del Mobile, alongside additional new pieces including cork-based tables for Bonaldo and a range of rattan sofas, also for Vincent Sheppard.

Milan: Contour Tables for Vincent Sheppard by Alain Gilles

Several other new furniture ranges will launch during Milan design week, including a Jaime Hayon-designed seating collection based on the movement of sharks and a set of line-drawing-style seats that reflect on Hong Kong's architectural vernacular.

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Milan: Contour Tables for Vincent Sheppard by Alain Gilles
Milan: Contour Tables for Vincent Sheppard by Alain Gillesv
Milan: Contour Tables for Vincent Sheppard by Alain Gilles
Milan: Contour Tables for Vincent Sheppard by Alain Gilles
Milan: Contour Tables for Vincent Sheppard by Alain Gilles
Milan: Contour Tables for Vincent Sheppard by Alain Gilles