At Design Miami: F2 by Ligne Roset

When I was a teenager, I may have skipped school more than I should have, but I always rationalized this practice by participating in educational activities during my truancy. One of my favorite pastimes was visiting the Ligne Roset showroom in Miami, where my black outfits were rather well complemented by the firm's predominantly black, white, and red furniture.

F2, table. Designed by Nils Frederking. Manufactured by Ligne Roset.

I'm not sure the salespeople were too fond of me, but it was their job to be polite, regardless of my age. One of the gentlemen liked to humor me, speaking with me of Franz Marc and Friedrich Nietzsche and other Europeans whose work I liked to misinterpret. So I experienced a tinge of sadness when Ligne Roset closed the Coral Gables showroom of my youth and relocated to Miami's Design District. The move, however, did pay off. Didier Gomez's newly designed showroom for Ligne Roset is 7,200 square feet of splendor, the perfect space to host the "Emerging Design" Exhibition.

Showing in December as part of Design Miami 2008, "Emerging Design" showcases some of the most prominent, international young designers working for the famed furniture company–all staged "in a fresh and dynamic mise en scène." And one of the most interesting pieces comes from German designer Nils Frederking, who takes practicality and space into account without sacrificing style. His F2 revolutionizes the folding table, creating a sculpturally appealing geometric design reminiscent of Calder's mobiles. Frederking explains, "The table’s three-dimensional and sculptural aestheticism is particularly evident during the folding process." This is no exaggeration: the folding and unfolding of the F2 might very well be the most entertaining and visually splendid part of your evening–for this reason alone, you might want to get your own F2, as it might save your next cocktail party from an awkward moment or two (for example, when you're forced to make conversation with your boss's odd and precocious teenager).

At Design Miami: F2 by Ligne Roset

F2 is German design legerdemain: folded, the table has a mere 8cm depth. It becomes as flat as a pancake (or a crepe). Better still, you won't have to trouble with the F2's handling–touch a button to release the table's locking device and it will fold easily (just imagine a marionette folding its legs once its strings have gone slack). The F2 was awarded the "Interior Innovation Award," a much-deserved prize, most especially if you've ever had to struggle with a badly designed folding table.

Given the beauty of Ligne Roset's new showroom, I will have to forgive them for abandoning their previous location, locus of many pleasant memories for me. And since they're currently showing the work of so many talented designers, I will in fact have to embrace their new showroom. I am already planning a performance sit-in as my protest-cum-celebration, wherein I will do nothing but assemble and disassemble the F2 for 8 hours while reciting German philosophy.

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