MA/U Studio is based in Frederiksberg and was established about three years ago by Mikal Harrsen and Adam Hall. Their current collection has an open shelving system, two wall storage systems both based on steel box units with a flexible series of drawers and shelves and there are three tables.
All the pieces are incredibly beautiful in their simplicity. They are minimal and they owe their strength to refined engineering but they are not cold or clinical or spartan. They illustrate perfectly that old touchstone for defining good design in that they have been taken to a point where it would be very difficult to take away anything or add anything without compromising or diminishing the elegance and beauty of the pieces. With considerable modesty the catalogue describes this as ‘optimized use of materials’ - the catalogue is as understated as the furniture.
R.I.G - Rudimentary Interior Geometry - shown above, is an elegant ladder-based system for wall shelving. The frames are in powder-coated steel in either black or white.
Vertical frames at each end and at intervals form bays with a width of 1110 mm and there is a choice of three heights of 756, 1464 or 2172 mm with cross bracing at the back which can also take back panels.
Shelves can be in glass or in wood from Dinesen finished in black oil, white oil or natural oil. These are held with a rebate at the end that notches over a cross bar of the ladder section and are given a thin and elegant front line by undercutting the leading edge with a bold chamfer.
One of the tables uses this same R.I.G. system with cross bracing and can have tops in laminate or with linoleum.
The unit wall storage systems are:
C.O.P. - Creative Office Project - with box units hung from a built in rail
R.A.C. - Randomly Attached Compartments
There are two large tables:
T.T.A. - Tribute To Albers - a plank table with a steel frame related to the R.I.G. design
N.E.T. - Never Ending Table - is a variation on a trestle that was designed by Søren Ulrik Petersen and which can be used to form tables in lengths up to 15 metres.
The trestles look almost as if they will drop flat - they do not form an A frame but the two leg frames in steel cross below the top with one side that does not reach the underside of the table top. Again it is perfect balance - like building up a structure in playing cards. The top of the longer side of the trestle has an open channel that holds an angled batten on the underside of the table top.
the Never Ending Table from the MA/U catalogue
This is not strength from glue or bolts or the strength of hefty, over-engineered supports but the balance you see in ballet - a dancer knowing exactly how and where to hold the weight of a partner to make it look absolutely and completely effortless.
These shelves and tables, in terms of their aesthetics and their refined and precise finish, are without doubt the equivalent in furniture to buildings by Vincent Van Duysen or John Pawson.