Element Office, Foster + Partners latest collaboration with Italian manufacturer Unifor, has been revealed at the Orgatec office fair in Cologne. The first two pieces in the range – a meeting table and desk – respond to the fluid, dynamic nature of today’s workplace and the need for flexibility to support both relaxed group working and individual study. Suitable for a residential or office setting, the simplicity and elegance of the design allows the tables to stand alone or as part of a larger arrangement.
The Element 01 study table was first created as a bespoke piece of furniture for a private residence. It is designed around the principles of concentration and collaboration: the straight body of the desk places everything within easy reach for individual study, while the curved end supports informal group working. The table cantilevers from a solid base at one end, formed by a “toolbox” containing timber trays and storage. Utilising a sliding mechanism originally developed for jewellery shop displays, allows the trays to appear to float when extended. Above this, the surface of the desk can be retracted to reveal a power source. The top surface tapers towards the edges to appear slim in profile and a single leg extends like a column to provide support. It can be specified in a range of materials to suit both domestic and office settings, including ceramic, glass, aluminium and wood.
The Element 02 meeting table is designed to support movement, discussion and group working. The circular table comprises two discs – a central pillar containing a power supply and a perimeter ring, which can be elevated to support both standing and seated meetings. Controlled by a lever and smooth internal mechanism, it can rise from 56 centimetres to a little over 1.2 metres.