Back to school means the air is a little different, young people and their backpacks are filled with new and exciting challenges….and what is more important at this time of year than studying and staying organized? With that in mind, Roberto Gil, Casa Kids’ Chief Designer, has taken a very custom project, inspired by well-known artists and designers, and released it in a streamlined version to the public. To discuss his latest design, Roberto Gil talks about the DUMBO Desk.
Q: Why do you call it the DUMBO desk?
Roberto Gil: Our early version of this desk was originally designed in DUMBO in Brooklyn, New York and became part of what would call our DUMBO Collection.
Q: Why did you design the DUMBO desk?
RG: I thought of the idea of the DUMBO desk because kids like to focus on homework when they have a really nice desk. Kids are actually relieved to do their homework on it, and they love having their own desk designed for them, instead of their having to use a kitchen table.
Q: What was the inspiration for the DUMBO desk?
RG: The upper part of the DUMBO desk was partly inspired by the the beautiful, minimal floating plywood boxes created by Donald Judd. The overall desk design was also influenced by industrially produced furniture of Jean Prouve. Judd was strict and rational; Prouve, playful and artistic. Prouve did colorful bookshelves with staggered vertical partitions and overhanging shelves; so you have distinct horizontal and vertical influences in the desk. My love for Mondrian is also a bit present in this design.
Q: What is age range for the DUMBO desk?
RG: Ages 8+ up . Kids can do their homework at the DUMBO desk until they are grown up. The desktop height is only one inch lower than a full-sized adult desk, and is able to fit an adult iMac, plus files.
Q: What are the features that would prompt a child to use the DUMBO desk?
RG: The main thing is that it is functional. A child can use the desk all the way through adulthood! It comes in birch, walnut, and oak with different painted finishes. The shelves include wire management for a surge protector, other cords, router and modem, plus DUMBO desk has functional holes and grommets. Part of the DUMBO desk design includes thin, flat drawers for pencils and sheets of paper. There are smaller shelves for pencil sharpeners, toys, drives, techie things and CDs. And room for a printer!
Q: You have a theory about children and their own “space” - can you hare more on this?
RG: I really believe that children feel better and more accomplished when they have their own special place to complete their work...not at the communal kitchen table. They go to “their space” and consequently, kids can then do their homework. As a designer and maker of beds, desks and other furniture designs, parents tell me all the time that their kids sleep better in their own beds and can work more autonomously if they’re in their desk space.
Q: What do parents need to know about the DUMBO desk?
RG The DUMBO desk can last 20 and more years. Parents can get jealous over this desk -- It is the archetypical adult desk... with storage.
Recommended for children ages 8 and up.
Dimensions are 84" L x 82.5" H x 22" D.
Available in birch, walnut, and oak in a variety of painted finishes.