A real conversation starter, the concrete table designed and cast by Dominic Boinich of 5 Feet from the Moon kept the table talk flowing freely at the unveiling of the 2017 Pasadena Showcase House of Design in California. The annual charity event raises funds to support community music programs.
The 16-by-5-foot table — commissioned by Terry Morrill of Pacific Outdoor Living, a landscape design-build company in Sun Valley — serves as the centerpiece of a space that garnered national honors. The 1,400-pound table, says Boinich, whose company is in nearby Santa Cruz, is the largest he’s cast.
“Terry sent me a rendering that showed a table with water running straight through it,” says Boinich, of the table situated between the showcase home and its pool. “He also told me they wanted me to do my thing and said I had ‘carte blanche.’ So I looked up what that meant, and then I got to work.”
He adds that typically when people ask him to build a table he tries to get them to include water or fire, or both, in the design. The owner OK’d both and the fire element was nestled alongside the requested plants — another 5 Feet specialty.
As a safeguard, Boinich says, he included a steel shroud to disperse the heat and direct it toward the outside of the table.
The size of the project raised concerns about making the piece structurally sound, especially since it needed to travel to Pasadena and then be mounted on three finished cinderblock pedestals.
“We (Boinich and his partner, Katrina King) needed to reinforce it substantially,” he says. “We did a post-tensioning system down the long rails, and we made it to Pasadena in one piece. Instead of trying to build a crate for it, I put my casting table on the truck and secured it.”
Watching the concrete table move to its final location was unnerving, Boinich says. It was carted to the site by a Bobcat and then muscled into position by about a dozen guys with Pacific Outdoor Living. The company also installed the landscape, pond and small stream at the end of the table. The table, Boinich says, was a beautiful way to tie the whole project together.
At the grand opening, the table topped conversations, even though liability issues prevented organizers from lighting the fire during the event.
“The benefits from the showcase go to a good cause, so the vendors are donating a lot of work,” Boinich concludes. “I did get compensated to cover my costs, and anytime you can get paid to bring something you’ve been dreaming of to life is priceless.