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Grand Central Table Folds Like a Subway Map

Grand Central table

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That coffee table above isn’t just an ode to minimalism: When not in use, in actually folds up, to become a tiny corner table.

Dubbed “Grand Central,” the table, by Swedish designers Sanna Lindström and Sigrid Strömgren is more than just a rendering: It will be unveiled this week at the Milan Furniture. The name comes from the its inspiration, a fold-up subway map.

Grand Central table

Grand Central table

The design has a gee-whiz appeal. But it also says a lot about the designers themselves and the generation they’re from.

Consider: If you live in a giant house in the suburbs, a fold-up table isn’t exactly useful to you, because you have plenty of space. On the other hand, consider you’re single and in your late 20s or early 30s and living in a big city. You’re starting to make decent money. But your apartment is tiny. Still, you often gather up a sizable group of friends for dinner parties and such. If that’s you, something like Grand Central is the ideal solution to the way you live. The only thing better would be a dining-table sized version.

In other words, Grand Central is one of those objects–like this convertible refrigerator we covered before–which speak to changes in how we live and what we value. Twenty years ago, when the suburbs were still the utopian ideal for young people? I bet no one would ever think to design something like this.

[Renderings my Martin Eek]

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