Z-Top / C-Lab

© Naho Kubota

C-Lab and Jeffrey Inaba recently collaborated with One Pot, with support from LIMN Architects and , to design a dinner table for 60 guests. This charity fund raising event was hosted in New York’s Park Avenue Armory, a rare Louis Comfort Tiffany interior.

The design required sixty linear feet of table surface in a slim thirty-five feet of available floor space. C-Lab creatively designed the Z-Top, not just fitting with in the spatial constraints, but also developing an immediate interaction among guests, prompting more informal discussion areas between courses, and cutting down the overall distance between diners.

We interviewed Jeffrey Inaba, and discussed C-Lab as an experimental research unit at Columbia University, his book “World of Giving” and research on altruism.

More following the break.

Architects: C-Lab
Location: , New York, United States
Director: Jeffrey Inaba
Project Designer: Simon Battisti
Project Team: Justin Fowler, Nathalie Janson, Amanda Shin, Leah Whitman-Salkin, Jeffrey Yip
Photography: Naho Kubota

© Naho Kubota

The table base and top were conceived of as two parts with distinct life spans. The legs are designed to be durable and re-usable in the mode of typical restaurant furniture. But unlike standard restaurant legs intended to disappear from view, here they are drawn to the edge of the 8-foot tabletop span economizing their total needed number, while increasing their visibility with a deliberate design identity to resonate in future re-uses. In contrast, the tabletop is made of thin MDF sheets (1/4”) sourced from remnant building site materials and in a state too damaged to realistically use after the event. Instead of reinforcing the top only for the added material to be disposed of at the end of the night, C-Lab made the insubstantial material a feature of the design, cantilevering the thin sheets to a maximum span possible that could accommodate dining activity.

© Naho Kubota
© Naho Kubota
Cite: Minner, Kelly. "Z-Top / C-Lab" 14 Nov 2010. ArchDaily. Accessed 31 Jul 2014. <http://www.archdaily.com/?p=88761>

1 comment

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    This reminds me of my old school cafeteria. Just get rid of the S shape and that is all it is. Its juxtaposition against that period interior really demonstrates how far the standard of design has fallen.

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