Cardi Black Box

ZIETA BAZAIR exhibition. Salone del Mobile 2011. Cardi Black Box gallery.


The exhibition at the Cardi Black Box gallery, curated by Maria Cristina Didero and Art at Work, during the Salone 2011 was a great opportunity to develop the new edition of unique products. Working on FiDU technology is all about experimenting with new materials, finishes, to find new possibilities of use for the technology.

This time we wanted to show that our design can be even lighter and that it is really easy to take away.

Our great challenge was to work with aluminium and to learn FiDU technology in this material, so we decided to develop Plopp in aluminium, as a showcase of an even more ultra-light construction. Normally Plopp stool can carry up to 2,5t which is not needed for a stool. We could easily rationalize and lower the possible load of the stool by producing it in aluminium. It also lowered its weight which is great for the transport costs and for the convenience of use.

To show this new feature and to tell a story in a funny and light way we decided to hang the Plopps on the meteorological balloons. Also to let people imagine it as a kind of a dreamy transportation method.

Fragile surfaces like Inox steel or copper need special protection to avoid scratches. For Inox steel and for material other than copper, we use knitted linen. It is natural, fits the shape of the stool and protects it very well. Especially for the Zieta BazAir exhibition for the Cardi Black Box, we decided to use linen covers as the only packaging. The Pearl Plopps made of Aluminium are very light – they are able to hang on the balloons during the exhibition. It is no problem for the customer to take a Plopp home, using a special handle designed in the linen cover.


The material research shown at Cardi Black Box:

We learn how to handle different materials during the inflation process. Each of them gives different technological and visual characteristics.

We play with the lightness and softness of Aluminium, with the solidity and fluidity of Copper, with roughness and durability of galvanized surfaces, with many coatings that can change the form and the material in different ways. We wanted to show how fun it is and how, step by step, we can fully control the inflated forms and the effect, ambient and new possibility delivered by them.

Because of the different material characteristics, sheets of different metals like steel, aluminium or copper behave in a different way when welded and inflated. They create their own bumps and dents. They bend more fluently or more sharply. We want to control the form perfectly for each metal while keeping their uniqueness and their natural behaviour, which gives them their durability and strength – it is a part of our ‘controlled loss of control approach’.

From left:

1. Polished copper

2. Sandblasted aluminium

3. Galvanised steel

From left:

1. Rusted steel

2. Laquered steel

3. Electropolished stainless steel

From left: 1. Oskar with Bianca Balti, photo by D. Venturelli 2. Oskar with Maarten Baas, photo by D. Venturelli, 3. Oskar with Ross Lovegrove and Tokujin Yoshioka.

From left: 1. Nicolo Cardi, photo by D. Venturelli 2. Ross Lovegrove, photo by D. Venturelli, 3. Oskar Zieta, photo by D. Venturelli.