Cosmic Desk │ 2021

Cosmic Desk │ 2021

PD23 Winner

Category:Furniture - Office/ Home Desk UnitsLocation:Lecco (LC), ItalyDesigner:Claudio Silvestrin, Claudio Silvestrin Architects, London, United KingdomManufacturer: Promemoria, Valmadrera, Lecco (LC), Italy

The essence and characteristic of this solid wood desk, rigorously absent of right angles, is that there is a hidden draw carved in an enormous sphere of solid pear wood that slots into the surface of the desk, supporting the desk itself. The other characteristic, of no less importance, is the intentional absence of right angles, allowing the shape and the material (the walnut top and the pear sphere) to be perceived as weightless, as if they were suspended in pure space.
The design philosophy we are accustomed to, is viewing the tree (wood) as an element of the earth, rooted to the earth, with the limits given by its being on the earth. In reality, the etheric energy of the tree goes beyond this by nourishing itself with the sun, the stars, and the cosmos. The tree stretches itself towards the light. It’s verticality, like our verticality, and arms (branches) that reach towards the light of the stars of our cosmos does not happen by chance. It’s this subtle, invisible, etheric life force, that inspired me to express the wood like a force- a spherical form that travels in the cosmos. As a planet with an immensely heavy mass appears weightless to our eyes, like so, this sphere of wood that weighs 365kg feels weightless to us.

The tabletop is slender and without corners and effortlessly supports the mass with solidness and stability. It almost seems ethereal. Resting our hands on a wood desk or wood drawer seen as celestial sphere, like the merging of sky and earth, makes our thoughts – if we so wish – brighter, lighter, able to take flight, less tied and bound to matter.


Claudio Silvestrin┃Claudio Silvestrin Architects

Despite his distinguished position in the architectural world, Claudio Silvestrin prefers to keep a low profile, avoiding the showiness preferred by many at the top of his profession. The same might be said about his projects which, rather than indulging in the spectacular and hyper-ornate, are understated affairs, serene and meditative.

Highly creative, Claudio Silvestrin was born in 1954, studied under A.G. Fronzoni in Milan and at the Architectural Association in London. His interest in philosophy, his vision, his integrity, clarity of mind, inventiveness and concern for details are reflected in his distinctive architecture: austere but not extreme, contemporary yet timeless, calming but not ascetic, strong but not intimidating, elegant but not ostentatious, simple but not soulless.

Claudio Silvestrin has extensive experience as a visiting professor. In 2013 he was appointed Walton Critic and tutored at the Catholic University of America, in Washington DC.

Claudio Silvestrin Architects was established in 1989 with offices in London and, since 2006, in Milan as well. The work of the practice encompasses real estate developments, newly built houses and resorts for private residence, art galleries and museums, restaurants, luxury retail stores and furniture design.

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