Concrete Canvas is essentially concrete cloth on a roll – a revolutionary material offering endless design possibilities. Amongst those exploring such possibilities is Portland-based artist Neal Aronowitz, who has used the material to craft his ‘Concrete Canvas’ furniture collection.
The collection consists of four tables, entitled the ‘Whorl Table,’ ‘Whorl Console’, ‘Todos Table’ and the ‘Enso Table’. As the tables had never been manufactured or produced before, original techniques of casting and forming were developed by Neal. The award-winning ‘Whorl’ series is a minimalist concept that subverts the stereotypical associations of concrete from rigid and dense; to fluid, light and lyrical. Producing such smooth contoured structures was not easy to achieve, the studio explains; “The challenge in the design and construction of this table was to stretch the tensile strength of the material to its limits for aesthetic beauty and interest, seemingly defying gravity.” The ‘Enso Table’ is described by the studio as being the next evolution in the ‘Concrete Canvas’ series. It draws inspiration from the creative discipline of Japanese ink painting, which is hand-drawn in a singular, swift brushstroke. The ‘Enso Table’ is a physical depiction of this discipline. “The Enso Table was conceived in a single fluid spontaneous gesture of ink on paper and then translated to this form made of concrete canvas and polished aluminum,” Neal’s studio explains. “The lightness and strength of concrete canvas makes it an ideal material to express the qualities embodied in the practice of enso.”