Neal Aronowitz, a Portland-based furniture designer, created Whorl Console Table, using a patented material called Concrete Cloth. The material consists of cement layered between fabric that can bond with water, backed with PVC, and it was previously used to cover disaster-relief shelters.
The pliable cloth can be molded into any shape before it is wet so it sets and hardens as a thin layer that is resistant to wear, water and fire. “In essence, it is concrete cloth on a roll,” said a declaration from Aronowitz, who manages his own design studio.
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The Whorl Console was awarded winner of the 2017 Gray Award for Product Design.
“It’s an incredible achievement- the studies he undertook, his enthusiasm for the material, his persistence in following his ideas, and, of course, the shape. It’s a very nice product. I would like to have one.” – Ingo Maurer, Gray Awards 2017 Judge.
The designer’s intention with this exclusive design was to “explore the material’s unique structural properties to express a fluid form, in contrast to the dense and heavy associations that we have with concrete”.
He tested the tensile strength of the material and pushed it as far as he deemed possible while striving to retain his vision for the product’s aesthetic.
The resulting furniture design is constructed by folding the material back on itself in wide loops several times. This creates a thin but strong structural support, and elevated height, for the flat surface on the top.
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