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Paolo Ulian for Le Fablier

Designer Paolo Ulian's humble use of marble in a series of sculptural furniture

by Paolo Ferrarini in Design on 14 April 2011

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Italy's Le Fablier, known for its impeccably-crafted classic wood furniture, in recent years has worked with a host of innovative designers to show how traditional style can translate in the future. In 2010 they collaborated with Gaetano Pesce on a series of architectural sculptures and now they've tapped Paolo Ulian to demonstrate his talents using marble.

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A natural fit for the project, Ulian was born in the Tuscan town of Carrara, the capital of sculptural white marble. Deciding to use medium quality marble, he explains, "I think it's even better than what's considered to be the first choice: it's more robust and humble, perfect for my projects."

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Ulian's limited collection consists of bookshelves and tables, all of which were designed and produced in order to minimize or totally eliminate waste. "Marble is a sacred material, it will not last forever, so I have a deep respect for this material," he told us. Sustainability and irony are present in the entire line, but a real standout, the "Numerica" bookcase, subtly reproduces Roman numerals in standard marble tiles.

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