Paris-based designer Arik Levy has worked with Spanish surface manufacturer Compac to create a marble-like kitchen that is stain- and scratch-resistant.
Called Mineral Gravity, the conceptual kitchen was unveiled during London Design Festival 2017, as part of the Design Frontiers exhibition at Somerset House.
Although it closely resembles marble, the kitchen is made from a synthetic material that uses mineral quartz. But unlike its natural counterpart, this manmade stone is considerably more durable, making it more suitable for use as a work surface.
“Everything’s better than natural stone,” Levy told Dezeen. “This is unbreakable and unscratchable and non-porous”
“Marble will break and it will scratch,” he added. “If you have a glass of wine spilled on marble and you can say goodbye to your table!”
The kitchen island on show in the exhibition was designed to look like it had been carved out of one block of dark quartz, “like a black iceberg”. It was presented alongside more slabs of the material, which were lined up against the walls of the exhibition space.
Levy told Dezeen that the material is also much more sustainable than natural marble, because there is virtually no waste in the manufacturing process.
“To get a block of natural stone, you throw away 50 per cent of the mountain, but to produce this kind of product, you don’t throw away anything,” he explained. “Here we have a slab made every five minutes, and its perfect.”
Compac – a company founded in Spain in 1975 – asked Levy to create the Mineral Gravity installation to promote two ranges of mineral quartz, Ice of Genesis and Unique.
This is the first time Levy has experimented with engineered stone – the designer usually works with more traditional materials like wood and glass. Past projects include bent-wood chairs and bottle-shaped pendant lights.