As part of the Col­lab­o­ra­tions exhib­it at the Toron­to Inte­ri­or Design Show, SET­tINg­STONE is an instal­la­tion designed by Gian­none Pet­ri­cone Asso­ciates and built in col­lab­o­ra­tion with CIOT and Struc­ture Corp. The exhi­bi­tion show­cased four Toron­to Design firms, each paired with a sin­gle mate­r­i­al with which to con­struct a con­cept space demon­strat­ing inno­va­tion in both its use and avail­able tech­nol­o­gy.

Paired with Cae­sar­stone, we cre­at­ed a 200 sq.ft. instal­la­tion that trans­formed the nat­u­ral­ly engi­neered stone prod­uct into a ver­sa­tile and mul­ti­fac­eted design ele­ment. As Cae­sar­stone is often used in res­i­den­tial appli­ca­tions the idea for the instal­la­tion was to take domes­tic ele­ments like drapes, table­cloths and uphol­stery and to pet­ri­fy their move­ment and form in a moment in time. We chal­lenged our­selves to make soft domes­tic ele­ments out of durable, hard stone and there­fore employed a syn­the­sized, nat­ur­al stone prod­uct made of 97% quartz and engi­neered with 3% resin and pig­ments, to pro­vide the nec­es­sary duc­til­i­ty to bend and sculpt what is usu­al­ly hard and brit­tle.

Push­ing the lim­its of stone to both sub­vert and height­en its nat­ur­al qual­i­ties, SET­tINg­STONE high­lights the beau­ty of stone while at the same time exper­i­ments with unex­pect­ed pos­si­bil­i­ties of plas­tic­i­ty, depth and tac­til­i­ty. Tra­di­tion­al Irish Green Mar­ble and Blue Lime­stone are jux­ta­posed to cre­ate a sliced crys­tal mono­lith, 16 ft high, where a care­ful grafi­a­to fin­ish on the lime­stone ren­ders it a rough ‘crust’ embrac­ing the exposed high­ly pol­ished mar­ble. The con­ven­tion­al tech­nique of book- match­ing is brought to a new lev­el. A hyper ‘book-match with­in the book-match’ cre­ates an exag­ger­at­ed kalei­do­scope of nat­ur­al Irish Green vein­ing.

The entire mass stands along­side a paper-thin ‘scroll’, a vault of Bliz­zard coloured Cae­sar­stone, heat-mold­ed to hov­er above a col­lec­tion of stone fur­ni­ture. The curve of the vault ris­es from 7ft 9” at its low­est point to 10 ft. 3” at its high­est, and spans 8 ft 5.5”. Milled down to 1⁄4” thick, the curved, Cae­sar­stone vault appears to be paper- thin.

Emerg­ing from a series of exper­i­ments, a cur­tain lamp, three table cloth tables and a tuft­ed bench were cre­at­ed using var­i­ous tech­nolo­gies: CNC tech­nol­o­gy, com­put­er­ized sand-blast­ing tech­niques, baguette faceting, water jet cut­ting and resin-based fuse bond­ing with ground fin­ish. These sup­ple, one-off pieces artic­u­late a kind of tex­tile, frozen in mid-air, seem­ing­ly unaf­fect­ed by grav­i­ty: a stone cloth sand­blast­ed and carved with cus­tom ‘embroi­dered’ pat­terns, folds and seams; a bench, con­struct­ed from 3⁄4” Ruby Reflec­tions Cae­sar­stone CNC cut to the chan­neled pro­file to give it the plush look of an uphol­stered bench.

Unit­ing archi­tec­ture, sculp­ture and the­atre, the instal­la­tion chal­lenges pre­con­cep­tions of stone by invert­ing its qual­i­ties of thick­ness and heav­i­ness to thin­ness and light­ness. Con­trasts between these nat­ur­al and engi­neered mate­ri­als ulti­mate­ly ren­der a prosce­ni­um whose pet­ri­fied draperies set the stage for a new per­for­mance in stone.