This spring, ÆTHER/MASS is unveiling four new objects at the Collectible Fair in Brussels. Each piece in the new collection serves as an exploration of new and undiscovered processes, materials, and production techniques. Despite the minimalist aesthetic of the pieces, they carry a profound and layered symbolic meaning.

In addition to a solid wooden cabinet, the new collection features metal objects born out of new collaborations with different workshops. This results in three designs, crafted from aluminum, wrought iron, and mirror stainless steel, each exploring and delving into the intrinsic properties and characteristics of the material “metal” in various ways.

Following a previous close collaboration, the Exposure cabinet is once again the outcome of an engaging dialogue between the designer and CasimirAteliers, master woodworkers specializing in top-quality solid wood furniture. The cabinet reveals an intriguing complexity within its apparent simplicity.

By seamlessly integrating the doors into the structure, they lose their traditional functional character. The doors, initially intended for closure and concealment, now stand forcibly open, creating an inviting gesture.

Developed in collaboration with the skilled artisans of Alton, the Aperture table takes shape as afunctional object where the ornament is not so much ‘added’ as it is derived from the active process of ‘removal.’ The ornament, formed by extracting material, regains meaning by using that same material to create its legs. Thus, ornament and function seamlessly blend, resolving their apparent contradiction.

The table is made from a solid 30mm thick aluminum slab. By using waterjet technology, 32 perforations have been created. The material is utilized here in its purest form, with no additions apart from the slab itself. The perforations create a captivating ‘transparency’ in the solid material. While the top and bottom surfaces of the tabletop are finely sanded, the raw edges and perforations bear witness to the waterjet technique.

“Working with skilled craftsmen is the guiding principle in my work. The synergy between craftsman and designeris at the forefront. Despite the popularity of crafts and the involvement of many young ‘makers’ working with their hands,authentic craftsmen are scarce. I’m talking about individuals who have an in-depth knowledge of their materials and can eliver exceptionally high quality. Personally, I aim to think broadly, sample various aspects, and experiment across differentdisciplines initially. Subsequently, I can delve deeper into the matter.”

The Forge candelabra is crafted in the workshop of Dujardyn‘s master blacksmiths, born from the combination of raw physical strength and fire. The merging of these forces gives rise to an elegant and refined object. Traces of the forging process form a tactile texture across the entire surface, bearing witness to the artisanal process. The fire, symbolized here by the candles, is carried by an object that has emerged from that very same fire.

The Beam Lamp describes a path through the air with its light beam, leaving behind a glow that materializes through the base. By mirror-polishing the stainless steel, it becomes elusive in itself, much like the light it carries. The unconventional shape of the base distinguishes the object from all archetypal forms associated with a floor lamp, giving it the appearance of a sculpture rather than a lamp. This piece is also the result of a collaboration with Alton.


ÆTHER/MASS is the design studio of Davy Grosemans. He personally describes his unique and experimental creations as ‘objects in search of meaning’. ÆTHER/MASS emerged from a belief in the collaboration between designer and maker. Each piece is treated as an exploration of new materials and production techniques, applied in unconventional ways. The emphasis is on the creative process and collaboration with artisans, free from market logic or trends, culminating in exceptional collections characterized by meticulous attention to detail and finishing.

The emphasis lies not so much on the function of the objects but rather on their expressive qualities. ÆTHER/MASS consistently strives to delve into the essence of each object. How far can you manipulate the meaning or function to the extent that it loses its original function or undergoes a shift in significance? What subtle intervention or deliberate detail can be added to enhance the object’s depth and meaning?

Restricting each edition to 12 pieces allows for sufficient time and space to persist in creating experimental, one-of-a-kind, and expressive works. The fulfillment derives from the creative process and collaboration, wherein the path from concept to final prototype carries at least as much sigificance as the ultimate outcome.