Never let it be said that contemporary designers don’t have a reverence for history. Not that anyone I know has recently accused them of such, but sometimes the most cutting-edge designs seem to exist in an aesthetic and stylistic vacuum of their own devising. That’s certainly fine. However, it’s also nice to see an occasional design that references the art of the ancients. Just so, Robert Kuo’s Fei Tian Wen and Qing Liu vessel sinks for Kallista employ the venerated medium of hand-cast solid bronze, using “simple repetitive patterns inspired by nature.”
Fei Tian Wen Vessel Sink. Designed by Robert Kuo. Manufactured by Kallista.
Vessel Sinks by Robert Kuo Embody Elegance and Style
The result is an artisanal coup that’s lovely to look at and even lovelier to touch. Qing Liu is an oval vessel with a smooth glossy interior and a ribboned exterior evoking the epochal striations of an oyster shell, while Fei Tian Wen features an exterior surface of swirling eddies, suggesting both the celestial demarcations of cirrus clouds as well as the lapping and plashing of ocean waves.
Born in China, designer Kuo’s artistic trajectory owes much to the achievements of the ancients. It’s no wonder then that Fei Tian Wen was inspired by the Dunhuang cave drawings created by pilgrims traversing the long and winding path that was once upon a time known as the Silk Road.
This—one of the world’s oldest—trading routes, was interminable and arduous, often requiring a good chunk of a lifetime to negotiate the 4000 some miles between Rome and China. No wonder Kuo named his lovely vessel sink Fei Tian Wen, or, “Flying Gods Design,” a tribute not only to the human endurance and fortitude that made such a journey possible but also to the spiritual exhalation experienced on completing it.
Both Fei Tian Wen and Qing Liu are hand-cast solid bronze. Dimensions of the vessel-style sinks are 19¼” long by 4½” deep. The lengthy bowl provides more space than conventional sinks, thus diminishing the usual messy splashback of face washing and shaving. Manufacturer Kallista offers both sinks in traditional or white bronze.
About the Manufacturer: If the name of fittings manufacturer Kallista seems to have a tinge of Greek about it, it should be no surprise. The company is known for tact and elegance, for walking that fine line between daring innovation and subtle expression of classical motifs, for “combining passion with a profound sense of aesthetic and functional efficiency.” As of late, Kallista has collaborated with Mick De Giulio to create a suite of luxury sinks for the master chef, and Barbara Barry for a series of timeless fittings of architectural elegance: “balanced, beautiful and impeccably crafted, the collection elevates the bath and the dressing room to settings of subtle sophistication.”