Inspiration – The Timber Terrazzo
Historically, terrazzo has always been about adapting squandered materials into practical and beautiful surfaces. Fashioned from the chips and gravel of marble used to construct palazzos in 15th century Venice, terrazzo’s mosaic-like and hardwearing surface is ubiquitous in contemporary design. Both pleasingly modern and classically styled, terrazzo can be found everywhere – from restaurant entryways in Belgravia to flooring in the London Underground. Random and organic, manufactured yet identifiably human, Foresso builds upon this tradition.
Conor Taylor – Foresso’s designer – noted that extremely high quality wood is regularly wasted in enormous quantities when processed. Delicate curls of planed wood and pieces of beautiful timber would, due to their unusual size or shape, regularly be pulped for filler or burned. Foresso reclaims these components and fashions them into a material that recreates the aesthetic of traditional terrazzo, with a rich grain and hand-of-the-maker quality, while making it more versatile than ever before.
Applications – Using Foresso
From countertops to café tables, Foresso can be adapted to modernise any interior space. Durable, lightweight, and flexible, Foresso is equally as suitable for broad interior uses as it is for detailed accents. The material can be incorporated into furniture design, wall panelling, and customisable surfaces, and can also be CNC carved to create eye-catching and intricate detail work.
Foresso requires no specialist equipment to install, and can thus be easily integrated into any interior.
Approach – Foresso’s Values
Foresso emerged from an appreciation of timber’s rich and natural grain, and takes cues from familiar materials to produce something new and original. Inspired by and designed in the heart of Central London, Foresso balances art-driven direction with practical iteration. After refining the process and recipe, Conor switched his attention to design – carefully selecting binder colours and timber compositions to reference terrazzo’s classic aesthetics.
To complement its quality craftsmanship, Foresso only uses FSC-certified timber and always sources locally.
Development – Iterated and Adaptable
Foresso was developed through an iterative and intensive process, slowly refined until fit for purpose and then continually improved until it could be scaled up to full sheet sizes (2400x1200mm). Throughout this process, Conor tackled the technical hurdles of imbuing timber with the qualities of Venetian marble: crafting wood chips with a stone-like feel, making the surface consistent and durable, and optimising the proportion between timber and resin-binder material; all ultimately ensuring that Foresso could be produced efficiently and at a large scale.
Once an airtight and effectual manufacturing process was established, Conor began work on developing Foresso’s collections – each recalling an experience of London’s many distinct locales.
As Foresso repurposes timber that would otherwise go to waste, the studio has built close relationships with its suppliers: Saunders Seasoning, who only deal in timber from within London and take meticulous care of it; and Wessex Timber, who never pulp or destroy any of their stock, instead setting it aside for specialised and innovative uses. Additionally, we source RAL matched pigments, allowing us to provide consistency in our standard ranges and makes ordering bespoke designs even more straightforward.