Iris Table

In late 2007, Established & Sons approached Edward Barber & Jay Osgerby to design a show of limited edition pieces in their Limited Gallery in Piccadilly, London. After looking at some of the themes and industrial processes used over previous years, Barber & Osgerby chose three that they wanted to experiment with further. These were anodising, machining metal and colour composition.

  • Year / 2008
  • Manufacturer / Established & Sons

An investigation into colour was already prompted by the Barber & Osgerby show ‘Colour by Numbers’ in 2005 where the walls of a London gallery were filled with multiple Pantone-coloured, plywood stools. With the help of an assistant, Laetitia de Allegri, hundreds of anodized colour chips were taken and arranged into various compositions. No colour theory was used, just intuition. This exploratory phase went on over a period of weeks, during which it was decided that the compositions should be continuous, circular, no beginning and no end. The five rings that were left looked so lively in their iridescent finish that Barber & Osgerby wanted to keep them as similar in shape to these colour studies as they could. Applying a structure used before with the Zero-In Table; a sheet of glass suspended over a frame. 
Each table had to be made from individual, coloured segments, as this was the only way to achieve the deliberate and exact variation of colour that they needed for each composition. Each segment was precision-machined, and then hand-dyed in anodizing tanks. Machining the segments from solid aluminium was the only way to enable the anodizing process: cast metal would not take the colour in the same way. The machined elements were made to an extraordinary level of precision.