Stylish furniture crafted with wood and wire by tension integrity instead of nails or screws


Robby Cuthbert, a Palo Alto-based contemporary furniture designer, makes sculptural pieces with wood and steel cables based on principles of tension, no screws, nails or glue, just the forces of tension between the parts. The modern furniture including tables, lamps, shelves and chairs relies on an overall balance of tension to create stability. “I generate architectural and organic forms, often with a hint of the fantastical or whimsical, that examine the role of tension in the storing and release of energy,” Cuthbert says. “With wood and wire as my primary materials, I have played with the suggestion of pent up energy held in check by opposing forces. Each piece maintains a state of potential energy that, if released, would result in a transformation of the work.”

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