KIDS’ TABLE

THE YEAR WAS 1976 AND THERE WERE KIDS THAT NEEDED A TABLE. I AWAYS THOUGHT I COULD DO IT A BETTER WAY THAN THE EXPENSIVE RETAIL DESIGNS.

THERE IS A PERFECTION LEVEL THAT HAPPENS WITH FURNITURE. I BEING WITH SECOND WIFE ARCHITECT MILICA AT THE TIME, WAS WATCHED OVER BY HER CRITICAL EYES. I DO NOT HAVE THE PATIENCE, NOR AM I SKILLED ENOUGH TO DELIVER PERFECTION. INEXPENSIVE WOOD HAS GREAT APPEAL FOR ME. SO I STARTED WITH A 1/2″ PIECE OF PLYWOOD AND DID MY THING WITH INVERTED CURVES TO RECEIVE SHELVES THAT COULD DOUBLE AS SEATS. THE 1″ WOOD DOWELS ACTED AS LEGS. THE SEVERE BENT CURVES WERE MADE WITH 1/8 PLYWOOD. THE SYSTEM OF THE LEGS BRACKETING THE SHELVING AND THE TABLE TOP SPANNING IN BETWEEN. THE LEGS SO LIGHT AND FRAGILE, BUT UP FOR THE TASK. THE PROCESS WAS CHALLENGING, BUT THE FINAL COAT OF LATEX WHITE PAINT MADE MOST OF THE BLEMISHES DISAPPEAR.

LOOKING AT IT 35 YEARS LATTER IS REFRESHING. THE FREEDOM OF SMALL SCALE DESIGN TO BUILD AND LIVE WITH IMMEDIATELY. THERE IT WAS, ONE WEEK AFTER GETTING THE IDEA.

THE TABLE BEING THE CONNECTION TO INTERACT WITH THE TWO STORY BOX STUDIO. WALL TO WALL PURPLE CARPET ON THE VENICE BEACH BOARDWALK ACROSS FROM THE PADDLE TENNIS COURTS IN THE HIP WESTSIDE LA. I WENT BACK AND VISITED THE AREA RECENTLY AND THE SIMPLE LIFE STYLE HAS BEEN REPLACED WITH AN ONSLAUGHT OF CRASS COMMERCIAL VENDERS, CAPITALISM HAS INVADED AND DESTROYED. THE STUDIO OCCUPIED BY SOME BAD TASTE CLOTHING OVER KILL.

THERE IS THE OPTION, WHEN A MAVERICK, TO DO WHAT YOU CONTROL RATHER THAN TRYING TO CONVINCE OTHERS. I WAS IN CONTROL ON THIS TABLE. I REALIZE I AM BEST WHEN LEFT ALONE.

AS ERIC CHAVKIN POINTS OUT, ” ARCHITECTS ARE OBJECT ORIENTED”. THIS IS MY OBJECT. I THINK IT INFLUENCED MY KIDS YASMINA AND ERIC, WITH MY SON ERIC BUILDING HIS OWN FURNITURE THESE DAYS AND YASMINA BEING VERY SELECTIVE ABOUT HER FURNITURE.


THIS TABLE FALLS INTO THE UNIVERSAL BEAUTY CLASSIFICATION FOR ME. ALL THE FREEDOM WITH A FUNCTIONAL OVERTONE.

THERE IS THE MAKING OF A BUILDING OR CITY. THE SYSTEM BEING INDENTED HALF CIRCLES LEGS, SEATING AND SHELVING. WITH AN ARCHER BOW PATTERN BETWEEN FOR INDIVIDUAL DESK SPACE. IT LOOKS RANDOM, BUT AHERES TO THIS PATTERN CONSISTENTLY. THE THEORY BEING THAT A VARIATION ON A THEME CREATES A HARMONY OF FAMILIARITY THAT TIES IT ALL TOGETHER.

I AM AMAZED THAT MORE DESIGNERS OR ARCHITECTS DO NOT BUILD THEIR OWN STUFF. THE PERFECTION LEVEL GETS IN THE WAY. MAYBE I SHOULD GIVE A CLASS LETTING STUDENTS EXPORE BUILDING THEIR IMMEDIATE FURNITURE ENVIRONMENT. THE FINAL BEING TO VISIT THEIR ABODE AND CHECK OUT THE VIBES. THERE IS SO MUCH WASTE AND CHEAP MATERIALS LAYING AROUND TO DO SO. IN THIS AGE OF BEING PRICED OUT OF HOMES, THE APARTMENT OR STUDIO IS THE SPACE. SO THE IMMEDIATE GOODIES CAN BE BUILT. I PUT GREAT EMPHASIS ON SURROUNDING YOURSELF WITH DESIGN. THAT IS WHAT OUR LIVES ARE ALL ABOUT, VISUAL MANIACS.

IS IT A TABLE, BUILDING OR CITY ?

GLEN

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  • eric chavkin

    Nice to see this again. I remember the beachfront studio, A basic box enlivened by art. Curves contrasting cubes. But what looks at first as free-form without purpose has, again, on closer inspection. a thee-dimensional logic of life. Like an amoeba, the convex and concave perimeter of the surface envelopes, then spreads, like its lookalike protozoa. The amoeba moves by flow a and eats via encirclement. Your in painted white wood captures the life-force like a snapshot in time.

    eric chavkin

    • GLEN HOWARD SMALL

      ERIC,

      I LOVE YOUR DESCRIPTION. IT MAKES ME WANT TO MAKE A WHOLE ENVIRONMENT OF THE TABLE PATTERN EXPANDING.

      GLEN

  • Maecilyn

    Wow you have an awesome design to your kids table. Very nice.

    • GLEN HOWARD SMALL

      MAECILYN,

      THANK YOU FOR THE RESPECT OF THE DESIGN. I WAS BEGINNING TO WONDER IF ANYBODY COULD RELATE. I THINK IT IS IMPORTANT THAT KIDS ARE RAISED AROUND DESIGN. BUT I MUST SAY IT SEEMS TO GET LOST IN OUR DIGITAL AGE.
      KEEP CLOSE, YOU ARE ONE THAT UNDERSTANDS.

      GLEN

  • maninthemirror

    Nice table. Would make an interesting house or building too.

    • GLEN HOWARD SMALL

      MITM,

      RIGHT ON, THAT IS MY TAKE TOO. ALL A MATTER OF SCALE, BUT THE DESIGN INTEGRITY IS IN TACT. I WOULD LIKE TO SEE YOU TAKE OFF WITH THE THEME.

      KEEP CLOSE,

      GLEN

  • eric chavkin

    AS to the forms for a house, see Portoghesi. The same forms are worked out several times. Pure design.

    eric

    • maninthemirror

      Loved Portoghesi’s work.
      Glen, maybe you can talk about him, if you like his work too.

      • GLEN HOWARD SMALL

        MITM AND ERIC

        I COULD ONLY FIND A COUPLE EXAMPLES OF PORTOGHESI WORK.

        I WILL STICK WITH MY TABLE, THE TWO PROJECTS I DID SEE WERE FORCED AND CONTRIVED . LACKED REFINDMENT OF THEME.

        GLEN

  • maninthemirror

    Google him, and click on “Images”. You will see many different pitcures of his work.

  • eric chavkin

    Forget his post-modern stuff. The Portoghesi work from the sixties: Casa Baldi, Casa Papanice, rocks. Like Italian Wright. Remember both Scarpa and Soleri were stung bt Wright’s organic forms, and Bruno Zevi published the Italian organic schoolof expressive form , mostly from Venice . This was before Aldo Rosi / Manfredo Tafuri /Marxist rationalist approach took over in Venice.

    eric.