The Celestial Coffee Table

I recently had the great pleasure of handing off a new coffee table to some clients who are long time friends and colleagues of mine. They were in the LA area for a parental visit, and so they came to Ventura County to say hello and pick up the table they commissioned me to make for them. This is a relatively new design, which is a development of what I called The Nisley in an earlier iteration. The Celestial is named both for its mid-century Jetsons look and for the people for whom I made it.

Seth and Eva are both scholars in my academic field--we've come up through the ranks together, and have engaged one another's published work from time to time. To say that they both do path-breaking, incredibly stimulating scholarship would be to understate my estimation of them. They are both interesting and kind people with a taste for modern design, and so it was a delight to make a piece for their home, which their dog Goliath (pictured) shares with them. As for the "Celestial" name: Seth and Eva have both written a lot about ancient Israel and Judaism during the Babylonian and Hellenistic periods, during which time there was an abiding and cross-cultural interest in the heavenly bodies and their movements and significance for human affairs.

It so happens, too, that the parent they were visiting in LA (Seth's dad) was a friend of William Burroughs, George Nakashima, and Sam Maloof, among other luminaries. The notion that my own work is in their relational orbit fills me with satisfaction! 

 

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Samuel Thomas