Andrew Metrick has been around beautiful furniture, art, and décor all his life. As a student of design, he’s fascinated by the history of those objects. And as a key player in the family-owned home furnishing business Elte, he knows a lot about how they get made. All those influences com together in Modern Stone, his new collection of marble furniture that’s available in-store and online at Elte.
Marble furniture combines ancient inspiration and contemporary lines
Pieces, which are executed in white Carrara and Calacatta Viola marble from Italy, Iranian Pietra Grey marble, and Turkish Travertine, all have historical influences Metrick found himself drawn to. The Cairo coffee table, for example, plays with Pyramidal shapes, while the gentle arches of the Arcade console table echo the lofty bridges and aqueducts of ancient Rome. Duvall and Shift show respect for 1970s brutalism, bold lines, and uncompromising geometric shapes. The Mineral coffee table celebrates the fractured nature of rock, while saluting the solidity and presence of stone decor.
Metrick is fascinated by history, but he’s not interested in simply reproducing it. “I wasn’t working from a literal standpoint,” he says. “It was about absorbing the familiar forms I wanted to play with and making them clean and new.” He hopes they will live on to become heirloom pieces.
Because pieces are linked by material, says Metrick, the eight collections “all have a different point of view but speak the same language.”
The unique beauty of marble furniture and stone decor
Each item is offered in the four stones to meet a range of stylistic needs. “When you only have one option, it can be quite limiting for people,” explains Metrick. He likes that stone is inherently unique from one piece to the next, he adds. “I had no interest in having each piece be exactly the same. If that were the case, we would have used a different material.“
Design details matter, and are evident in mitred edges, precisely-cut veneers, and hand-polishing. “If you look at a dining table top or the edges of console table, you are often seeing two sheets of stone pressed together to look like they are one, often put together in an unsophisticated way. I would not accept that.”
Design as a team effort
Metrick is refreshing frank about the collaborative nature of design, and says he’s skeptical of designers who over-claim ownership for a collection. “From the high-level view, the design process is always a team effort,” he suggests. Design direction may flow through him, he says, but an in-house team helps develop product and works closely with production partners for support and feedback on specifications.
While stone decor mixed with other materials—perhaps wood or metal—may turn up in subsequent collections, Modern Stone has a singular focus. “I wanted,” says Metrick, “to create forms that only used marble, and that celebrated its beauty.”