Van Cleef & Arpels
New York, NY
In 2013, Van Cleef and Arpel’s flagship U.S. boutique reopened following a major renovation featuring an Art-Deco inspired concept created by Patrick Jouin and Sanjit Manku of Jouin Manku. As part of this renovation, Moore + Friesl were hired by GSF Fabricators to help develop Jouin Manku’s designs for this project, including a series of freestanding sales tables, podiums, reception and display tables in various dimensions, and a 13-foot-long dining table to aesthetically complement their concept.
While the initial design called for only one material to match the grey- and bone-colored Corian material used throughout, Moore + Friesl selected several materials to better meet the design requirements. They had to select the right materials to execute the very fine designs, implementing cabling for the security and lighting requirements. This required extreme precision in the assembly (less than 1mm tolerance).
Over the course of one year, they developed pieces made of: thermoformed Corian; milled Corian; thermoformed acrylic; thermoformed glass; milled high-density material; laser cut, cast and machined aluminum; and wood. Each material had different thermal properties with differing rates of expansion and contraction, requiring different tolerances; and each material dictated its own fabrication process to achieve its final form. All of these differences had to be taken into account before selecting materials.
Moore + Friesl used thermoformed Corian wrapped in leather for the sales tables, which have a unique podium attachment to one side; they used milled slices of high-density material, which is more thermally stable than wood and allows for guaranteed curvature between multiple parts, for the reception desks with internal drawers; the Corian pedestals, which serve as display podiums for merchandise, are covered by custom acrylic domes that are highly polished to eliminate distortion and allow a clear view of the merchandise; and the 13-foot-long elliptical dining table has a base made of milled sections of high-density material painted to match the bone-colored Corian, and features a solid wood edge whose grain runs perpendicular to the table edge.
The project shows how very different materials can be harmoniously integrated and fitted tightly together.