It all started in 2003 when Mattia Bonetti dreamed of making a piece of sculpture but in a dining table form. The Paris-based designer wanted to the something out of the ordinary, spectacular and extremely creative and that’s how ‘Abyss’ was created.
“I was imagining something telluric, from an abyss under the surface of the sea or in a very deep cave. Trees, corals, bubbling volcanoes—all these shapes together become a table, et voilà!”
The designer wanted to create something with a very contemporary design, he used sheet steel for the surface due to the material’s ability to be rendered perfectly flat and used bronze for the baroque base. To achieve the glossy, electric hues, Bonetti had some help from his cousin, a professional gilder, to coat the table with white gold leaf and colorful transparent varnishes. This is a technique that is very well known and talked about on this blog.
His intention with this piece was that it was meant to turn out to be a usable sculpture. Therefore it needed some standard requirements, like a certain height and depth per example and comfort was also an aspect to take into consideration when designing this dining table.
The otherworldly creation, which made its debut at a show at London’s David Gill Gallery, was part of a minuscule edition of eight, two have yet to be realized.
Despite the rarity of this dining table, its artistic design still sparks curiosity from the most well-known people in the world of design. The collector George Lindemann bought the first one, all pinks and golds, for his Miami Beach house, where it is joined by eight complementary chairs that he commissioned from Bonetti. Tiffany & Co.’s chief artistic officer, Reed Krakoff, ordered a narrower, blue version of this dining table for his Paris living room, and, perhaps not surprisingly, Gill and his partner, furniture and interior designer Francis Sultana, placed a red-and-gold version of this dining table in their Maltese palazzo.