At the start of 2016, Caesarstone, manufacturer of quality Quartz surfaces for commercial and domestic kitchens, began a year long collaboration with British designer Tom Dixon.  ICE (shown above) introduced a series of four conceptual kitchen installations inspired by the elements – Water, Fire, Earth and Air.  It was revealed at the Interior Design Show (IDS) in Toronto (21-24 January 2016).  The Ice Kitchen was inspired by the sharp angles of glaciers and the frozen lakes of Northern lands, where icebreakers clear the ice for the passage of freighters. ‘Powering their way through the ice, they leave behind a frozen mix of jagged pieces in a spectacular array of whites and greys’.

Globally renowned designer Tom Dixon was born in Tunisia, moving to England with his English father and French mother when he was four. Self-taught and now a prolific, successful  designer his breakthrough worldwide recognition came after he designed a legless chair for Italian brand Cappellini in 1985.

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Earth Kitchen

The Earth Kitchen is redolent of ancient Roman structures – each of the kitchens combines Caeserstone surfaces with fixtures and design elements from the Tom Dixon collection.

Though initially intended to be presented individually in four different countries, the conceptual kitchens were presented together as ‘The Restaurant’ at the Milan Design Week in April 2016. Said Dixon: ”We thought it would be great to bring them all together at the most important design show of all. When we found the 18th century building (Rotonda Della Besana church) in the shape of a cross with four distinct spaces, it was like a sign”.

Fire Kitchen

Combining the appearance of basalt with highlights of gold and brass (typically ‘Dickensian’ metals), The Fire Kitchen suggests warmth and flame. It resonates beautifully with Dixon’s ‘Melt’ series of pendant light fittings, fashioned in copper.

“I think people may be bored of kitchens being as minimal and invisible as possible. I’m demonstrating that kitchens can have a sculptural impact in a space, and promote new ways of eating preparing and enjoying food” says Tom Dixon.

Air Kitchen
The Air Kitchen plays with the idea of floating, using space, open shelves and balanced artifacts from the Tom Dixon collection.

According to Eli Feiglin, The Vice President of  Marketing at Caesarstone: “Each year we explore a new design concept that displays different elements of Caesarstone; be it new colours and textures, or inherent surface characteristics – such as strength and durability. This year (2016) we are pushing the limits of experimentation with the material, collaborating with design innovator Tom Dixon. His work is extremely inventive, fresh and thought-provoking; and we feel it brings a fascinating new angle to the creativity typical of Caesarstone’s kitchens.”

If your idea of a contemporary kitchen is safely anchored in straight planes with a predominantly grey palette, these glamorous, ‘conceptual’ kitchens may give you more food for thought.