Instead of forcing materials to follow form, this unusual piece of origami furniture stems directly from an exploration of materials. The 4FoldLow Table answers the question: what can one build from a single standard-sized sheet of steel? You might be surprised — unless you’re as clever as this designer.
Designed by George Rice for Formtank, the 4FoldLow table is a thoroughly-engineered solution to this innocuous-sounding query – each cut and fold reflects careful consideration of material properties and structural stability.
The extruded, bent and manipulated structural object is topped with a single piece of clear glass, showing off the multi-faceted shapes supporting it below.
Despite (or because of) the rigor that went into it, result is a lovely origami-inspired form – like a piece of nature, its shape reflects its essential function, evolving from mathematics and physics rather than the purely-artistic vision of someone standing outside these systems.
More from the designers
“From a 2 dimensional plan comes a 3 dimensional form. The 2d3d Group is a collection of radically designed tables, all of which unfurl for a visual fiesta of geometric precision. Admired for their intricate form, their precise engineering and efficient use of materials, the 2d3d Group is appreciated by those who find beauty in function and oppose design for the sake of design.”
“L’art du pli. A striking square table with the elements of a future classic. Bending back the sub-structure in your minds eye reveals the innovation of the design or “The art of the fold”. The horizontal and vertical components provide the strength and rigidity in this delightful marriage of creativity and logic. Cut and folded from a square of sheet steel, 4foldlow, as with the entire 2d3d Group, has been reverse designed from the industry standard size of sheet steel. This approach optimises material usage, 1 sheet produces 8 tables and generates just 3.5% waste.”