palette table 1

Taking its shape from an artist’s palette, this highly unusual conference table design mixes people like paint colors to produce new creative combinations from the resulting interactions. Cutouts in the curved wood surface invite users to sit close to each other in small groups, exposing each individual to a larger number of fellow workers than a conventional rectangular table would.

palette table 2

palette table 3

The table was created by Spanish architecture firm Menéndez and Gamonal Arquitectos for the Classroom Building at Oviedo University’s Milan Campus. The intention, the designers explain, is to “improve relations among students,” encouraging them to be more social and collaborative.

palette table 4

palette table 5

The table is made of wood and stainless steel with pendant lighting and plenty of chairs. Six circular and semi-circular voids bring students into contact with various small groups seated on the edges, drawing one ‘color’ into another. The setting feels friendly and informal, offering a comfortable place to brainstorm, study and make new friends.