The mark of a good designer is work that blends into its surroundings. The mark of an amazing designer is work that seems to rise above it completely.
Brooklyn design studio Rock Paper Robot has made a set of tables that might blow your mind.
Made out of square cubes with empty space in-between them, the tables look like giant Rubik’s Cubes. Except for the fact that they don’t rotate. At least, not how you’d expect.
Magnets push the cubes apart while tensile steel cables hold them in a permanent stasis. The result is a table of cubes that appear to be floating peacefully, but are actually in a state of constant tension.
Here’s a look at the complicated steel cabling.
Since it’s held together completely by magnets, the table moves as you touch it.
You can push and jiggle the table to your heart’s content without harming the blocks, the magnets, or the steel wiring, all of which are flexible and will spring right back into place.
According to its designer, the tables exhibit “classical physics applied to modern design.”
If you’re worried about how the table might hold up with real objects on it, fear not. Rock Paper Robot also makes a matching shelf using the same principle, which appears to “float” on the wall and seems purpose-built for holding heavy objects.
The table comes in both coffee and side table sizes and can be customised in a variety of woods and finishes. The shelf comes in walnut or aluminium and L-shaped or regular sizes. Prices start at $US10,000 for the table and $US2,500 for the shelf.