The refined corners of food and design merge once again, this time courtesy of students from the coveted ECAL school. For the occasion of Maison et Objet, cookware brand Mauviel 1830 has collaborated with upcoming talents from the Master in Advanced Studies in Design for Luxury & Craftsmanship programme on an inventive new range.

In a project called ‘Cooking The Future’, the team of students, under the design guidance of Tomas Kral, immersed themselves in the 800-year history of copper-ware that Mauviel espouses. For this, they travelled to Normandy's Villedieu-les-Poêles (also known as ‘the city of copper’) for a lesson in luxury cookware.

To ensure the students got the full experience, they also worked alongside French chef Yannick Alléno so their pieces are functional as well as experimental. The assortment is imbued with Mauviel's trademark elegance and quality, with some clever kitchen solutions in-between – like two level pans, meat curing machines and a scallop cooker.

Not everything was made in copper though. Martin Bolo’s ‘Dame de Nage’ is a nifty device realised in silicone, with a pocket-sized pivot that fixes onto a pan in order to hold the spoon above when not stirring. Pauline Masson’s imaginative sleek white asparagus set is equally useful. In addition to cooking the vegetable to perfection, tip to stalk, the set also includes tongs that ensure the shape isn't altered when served.

The pioneering use of copper in Takahiro Yamamoto’s Japanese-inspired geometric tiffin-style box is impressive, with its warm contrast of wood and burnished metal; while there is a certain eloquence in Jenna Kaes’s oval ladle, that can act like a colander, separating solids and liquids.

Imagined only as prototypes for the moment, the collaboration continues to celebrate ECAL’s breadth of experimentation. ‘Creativity knows no boundaries’ says ECAL’s director Alexis Georgacopoulos, ‘and certainly not those of kitchens!’

TAGS: MAISON ET OBJET, KITCHENS