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2005/197/1 Tea and coffee service, 'Tea & Coffee Tower' series, black and yellow, silver / chrome / thermoplastic resin, designed by Denton Corker Marshall, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia, 2002, made by Alessi, Italy, Europe, 2003. Click to enlarge.

‘Tea and Coffee Tower’ designed by Denton Corker Marshall for Alessi

Designed
Melbourne-based architectural firm, Denton Corker Marshall (DCM), designed this tea and coffee set for the Italian design company, Alessi, in 2002. Made from silver (black-chrome finish) and yellow thermoplastic resin, it is one of twenty-two tea and coffee services in a series 'Tea & Coffee Towers' released by Alessi in 2003. Twenty-two internationally acclaimed architectural firms form Europe, Asia, Australia and the USA, which Alessi considered to be 'fundamental to the debate on contemporary design', were each commissioned to design one set in the series. The project followed Alessi's highly influential 'Tea and Coffee Piazzas' project of eleven postmodern tea and coffee sets designed by Italian and international architects in 1983.

Previewed at the 8th Biennale of Architecture in Venice in 2002, 'Tea and Coffee Towers' demonstrated many different and innovative solutions to a single design brief. Alessi required the sets to consist of a teapot, coffee pot, milk jug, sugar bowl and tray, and to develop from 'experimental research, free from the limits usually imposed by industrial mass production'. DCM met Alessi's challenge by creating a micro skyscraper for the table. The design closely relates to the firm's exploration of ideas such as ' how tall can we build, how far can we project', and was directly inspired by their Abu Dhabi tower designed in 1998. When not is use, the set forms a table centrepiece in the form of 'tower'. It dismantles into individual components for use.

Set up in 1972 by John Denton, Bill Corker and Barrie Marshall, the award-winning architectural firm of DCM has designed buildings around the world. Their 'Tea & Coffee Tower' complements the Museum's Alessi collection, particularly the 'Tea & Coffee Piazza' that Aldo Rossi designed in 1983 and its broader holdings of contemporary design as an exmple of architecture-inspired tableware design from one of Australia's leading architectural firms.

Eva Czernis-Ryl, Curator, 2005

Summary

Object No.

2005/197/1

Object Statement

Tea and coffee service, 'Tea & Coffee Tower' series, black and yellow, silver / chrome / thermoplastic resin, designed by Denton Corker Marshall, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia, 2002, made by Alessi, Italy, Europe, 2003

Physical Description

Tea and coffee tower consisting of a teapot, coffeepot, milk jug, sugar bowl, vase and tray, silver / thermoplastic resin, designed by Denton Corker Marshall, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia, 2002, made by Alessi, Italy, 2003

Stackable tea and coffee set comprising a teapot, coffeepot, milk jug, sugar bowl, vase and tray. All are made of sterling silver with exteriors finished in black chrome. The teapot and coffeepot have handles and spouts covered with yellow thermoplastic resin coating. The lids and bases interact to both link the elements when the set stands as a tower, and to change the way they sit on the tray and act as coasters for vessels placed directly on the table.

Marks

Stamped on the bases of the tea pot, coffeepot, milk jug, sugar bowl, vase and tray: 'ALESSI/ITALY/DENTON CORKER/MARSHALL/...illeg.../10-99', silver marks.There are four small white fabric circles adhered to the bases of the teapot, coffeepot, milk jug, sugar bowl and vase.

Source

Credit Line

Purchased 2004

Acquisition Date

13 September 2005

Cite this Object

Harvard

'Tea and Coffee Tower' designed by Denton Corker Marshall for Alessi 2020, Museum of Applied Arts & Sciences, accessed 26 October 2020, <https://ma.as/354714>

Wikipedia

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