Table Tennis for the Casual Enthusiast

Posted by // December 12th, 2012 // Product Design No Comments »

You don’t have to be a ping pong expert to enjoy the game of table tennis and even own your own table. Standard tables are not particularly expensive and allow for friends and families to compete against each other in friendly rivalry. Official rules of the sport don’t always get followed to the letter of the law, which is helpful as the below tables aren’t exactly acceptable for competitive matchplay.

The table below was designed by conceptual artist Tom Burr for Neiman Marcus, the luxury department store with locations across America. Limited to only ten tables, the forty-five thousand U.S. dollar product was available in the lead up to Christmas last year. Burr explained that the matte-black rubber table (yes the table is made from rubber) would allow the ball to bounce more and offered ‘low-key glamour, like that of a sports car’s bumpers and guards’.

New York-based product design consultancy Aruliden created this blackboard inspired table for Puma back in 2010. The table is built with ash legs and a ceramic chalk top surface which allows users to keep score and write notes for technique and shot making. Silver chain-link netting finishes off the look with an open shelf providing storage for equipment. It was available for just under four thousand dollars at the Conrad store located in Manhattan.

In 2008 Rirkrit Tiravanija, the Thai artist and professor at Columbia University, designed a chrome table tennis table for Cumulus Studios. With only ten available for retail, it was priced at an eye-watering fifty-five thousand dollars. Crafted using polished mirror polished stainless steel and with a glass net, the table was featured at the Rirkrit Tiravanija: Reflection exhibition in January 2009. It could potentially double up as a food preparation area.

This luxury table tennis table was designed by Hunn Wai in 2009 and emulates the style and fashion of the Victorian era. The sport was invented by the English upper-classes of the late-nineteenth century and this table pays tribute to where it originated. The black table features French Rococo patterns in gold lacquer, with hand-lathed timber legs and a floral net. Its surface is made from DuPont’s Corian material, composed of acrylic polymer and alumina trihydrate, which is commonly used for kitchen countertops. Having been educated at both the Singapore National University and the prestigious Design Academy in Eindhoven, Netherlands, Wai and his creative partner Francesca Lanzavecchia have been named as ‘designers of the future’ by Newsweek.

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