Photography: Shelley Horan

JX8 is a twenty-seater table commissioned by ANZ and designed and made for Foolscap Studio. The  overall dimension is 6.0 x 1.6 x 0.75m - The largest table Hugh McCarthy has ever made.

Hugh worked closely with Foolscap and their concept ‘Open House’ to create a furniture piece to compliment the style and sophistication of a meeting room adjacent to an open kitchen. Of all the options presented, the four curved tops and eight extruded J shapes shown here had the right balance of form and practicality and is closest to the earliest crude sketches in Hugh’s sketchbook. The overall form is both playful and fluid with the manipulation of convex and concave components.

There is a stack of woodworking techniques used in this table, the likes of which Hugh had not attempted on this scale before. It took up most of his workshop and was designed to be broken up, fit in a lift, and then reassembled on site. The brass elements came later in the design process – these are a solution to linking all the walnut components together whilst breaking up the mass of dark brown woodiness.

This project demonstrates how designers and craftspeople can collaborate and explore the possibilities of woodwork.