Any professional immersed in the world of interiors will be familiar with Ober, the French enterprise that operates a slew of surfacing brands under its corporate umbrella – these include Oberflex, Marotte and Concrete LCDA. Recently, the 93-year-old company underwent a branding overhaul, working with cutting-edge designers to bring a more contemporary feel to its lines. A resulting series of laminated sheets and structural panels takes blotter paper as an elegant and sublime source of inspiration.
Called Pure Paper Color and conceived by French furniture and product designer Patrick Norguet, the line’s 18 monotone hues range from creamy ivory to steel blue, and are available in flat sheets or with gently embossed geometric patterns that give the surfacing an added layer of refinement. The 3D effects range from a grid of dimple-like punctures to tiny, uniformly stacked brick-shaped impressions. Dyed through for an ultra-saturated pigmentation, the textural surfaces have the same matte finish as notepaper.
I love how technical this material is. It’s very precise but also natural, just like paper” – Claire Weisz
As one juror observed, “There is a kind of schism when you talk about high-tech, and then you talk about traditional modes of making things. For centuries, paper has been manipulated, embossed and used for things like blotting paper. But until now, we haven’t seen it used as a building material, and that’s quite interesting.” Scratch resistant and easy to apply, the panels are also acoustic buffers that can be cleaned with just a bit of soap and water.
Pure Paper Color
Patrick Norguet, Paris, France
OberSurfaces, Longeville-en-Barrois, France