Brutalist masculinity and modernist minimalism are in perfect harmony with this Adrian Pearsall slate top walnut base Living Room Set. Made by Craft Associates. Thick, earthly textured slate evokes the menacing mystery of the dark Monolith from 2001 A Space Odyssey. Pearsall understood the importance of combining organic elements. Only a true designer can create something that appears simultaneously hulking and frail, both heavy and light. The solid walnut vertical frames are cut and shaped to mimic the dimensions of the slate while softening the overall esthetic. The end tables are the beautiful, but the coffee table is the belle of the ball. The slate rests inside the frame rather than on top and there’s a small gap on each end that helps to give the slate an airy floating look. The legs intersect with visible penetrations to the horizontal frames. Yet another small detail that adds to the collective beauty of this brutalist piece.
Adrian Pearsall Slate Coffee Table: 58” L x 22” D x 15” h
Adrian Pearsall Slate End Tables: 22” W x 27” D x 19.75” h
About Adrian Pearsall:
He designed some of the most exuberant and expressive American furniture of the 1950s and ’60s. For verve and vivacity of form, he surpasses even Vladimir Kagan — whose work is the emblem of swinging, sexy mid-20th century modernism. Pearsall gave his imagination free rein, and his flamboyant, eye-catching styles are icons of what has become known as “Atomic Age” design. He studied architectural engineering at the University of Illinois before opening his Pennsylvania furniture company, Craft Associates, in 1952, and that training shows in many designs. A Pearsall trademark, for example, is a lounge chair with an exceptionally tall, trapezoidal back, which give the pieces a skyscraper-like silhouette. Pearsall also had a talent for so-called “gondola” sofas — long, low-slung pieces with upswept ends. Many of his sofas and chairs are supported not by legs, but on gently arced walnut skids. He also had a gift for tables, in particular glass-topped side and coffee tables with frames that have the look of an Alexander Calder stabile. His work adds an attention-getting, sculptural exclamation point to any décor.