You’ve gotta love products based on some sort of spatial or formal constraint. Take the 3Fold or Cootie Catcher tables, for instance, or even the Kyoto Seat. Each of these began with a conceptual notion: that of a single flat plane folded or creased to create the contours necessary for a given function. Of course, the example par excellence of this idea is James Dieter’s Origami Chair, a piece that actually does fold in on itself to metamorphose from a 2-D piece of polycarbonate mesh into a fully structural 3-D chair.
Fold Sink. Designed by Charles Martino for I Conci.
Leave it to the Italians to amplify this repertoire further still—Charles Martino’s Fold sink for I Conci challenges our comfortable sense of the materiality of things, achieving the illusion that one could simply crease and fold a two-inch thick slab of marble as if it were a mere sheet of paper. Lately familiar to 3rings readers via the Colorado 13 Marble Vanity, I Conci ascribes to a philosophy of “the materials of contemporary idealism,” a tag-line that—however apropos as a metaphor for new product design—could just as easily refer to the manufacturer’s tangible preference for the solidity of pure marble. I Conci revels in the luxuriance of this preferred material for kitchen and bath, and while the Fold freestanding sink partakes of the very same affection, the shape represents a bit of a departure. Most of the I Conci line features linear shapes either alone or counter-poised to rounded shapes (as in the interior of Colorado 13 sink). The Fold sink, to the contrary, creates the illusion of curvilinearity through the aforementioned subtle creasing effect, establishing a unique aesthetic that’s refined enough to be formal yet novel enough to eschew arrogance.
Fold is also notable for its construction. Made of a single block of marble, Fold is designed for freestanding applications: the accompanying spigot emerges enigmatically from the floor, furthering the Roman bathhouse feel of the whole ensemble. But don’t let that deter you. Whether in public installations or the privacy of your own bath, Fold’s elegant contours and definitive materiality represent a miniature oasis—helping you to feel removed from the rabble of the everyday, if only for a few blissful seconds.