It may be the 21st century, but we humans are still endlessly enthralled with the moon. Our abiding fascination with this rock tethered to our home planet by gravity manifests in all sorts of ways, particularly through art and design. Moon-themed creations might include giant glowing lunar floor cushions, topographic lunar tables, and all manner of globe-shaped lamps, but rarely does anything attempt to take on a more elusive facet of this astronomical object: the very rock it’s made of.
A new series of furniture from Studio Furthermore imagines what it might be like to sculpt furniture out of “lunar-cut mineral ore,” rendered here in more terrestrial materials like aluminum and minerals. Designed to look like it’s made of actual moon rock, the collection includes stools, lighting fixtures, and tables in a variety of sizes. Pocked and pitted just like the real thing, these sculptural objects are rugged and raw, made with a “lost foam” technique used in a number of other projects completed by the designers.
The Moon Rock furniture collection debuted at this year’s Collectible design fair in Brussels, Belgium. Not only is it beautiful to look at and fully safe to use, but it also attempts to illustrate a turn toward optimism about the future, no matter how dire conditions may seem to become here on Earth.
The description of the project is a bit tongue-in-cheek, but hopes to stimulate our imaginations so it’s easier to envision new means of survival and exploration. It reads: “Much still remains obscured about the silver-gray body which rises and falls over the night sky, keeping watch as it has done for millennia. However, it is now thought that the moon was born out of the Earth during a mass impact event. Characterized by its surface of pristine impact craters, the Moon has something of a shielding effect protecting Earth from solar winds, meteorites, and space debris. Within the top soil, a wealth of exotic materials can be found which traveled from further out in space and have deposited themselves over the lunar surface. Many scarce materials here on Earth are abundant on the Moon just beyond our reach, for the time being anyway.”
“Studio Furthermore offers us a glimpse into a not-too-distant future [that] sees lunar mining providing much of the scarce feed material on which industry depends, taking the strain off of Earth’s diminished resources. The designers imagine working with moon rock as marble or granite would be worked today. Taking cues from lunar geology, the studio has created a monolithic material language fusing recognizable geometric shapes with chiseled rock formations.”
Founded in 2015, Studio Furthermore consists of creative duo Marina Dragomirova and Iain Howlett. After meeting during their masters studies at the Royal College of Art, the duo set off on a joint mission to explore new materials and cultural realities formulated through ongoing research into science and naturally occurring processes.
The designers enjoy experimenting with mediums like aluminum, glass, and ceramics. Their work has been exhibited internationally at museums and fairs including the Gent Design Museum, the Venice Architecture Biennale, and a solo show at the Aram gallery in London.