Love Hultèn is a Swedish designer who likes to fuse modern high technology with traditional woodworking and shopcraft, creating a unique blend of everyday functionality with pleasing aesthetics and mad fabrication skills. We’ve covered Love’s amazing work before, in his supersized Lego computers and wooden MAME console, but this workbench takes the cake.
The “Tempel,” as he calls the piece, looks like a stately, finely-crafted 19th century writing desk from the outside, but open it up and it screams 21st century workstation. Inside the cabinet, Love has hidden a high-end, liquid cooled computer and electronics tools. The desk is built from ash and walnut with brass hardware accents.
At the center-back of the desk, a motorized walnut frame rises up to reveal a hidden 24″ flat screen monitor. On the left-hand side of the desk is the hardware interface controls for the computer: Data ports, control knobs and switches, and cooling system controls (with a tres Captain Nemo bubble viewing port for monitoring coolant levels). On the right, the electronics work area houses a temperature-controlled soldering station and a voltmeter with an analog needle gauge display. On both sides of the work area can be seen the speaker grills for the 2.1 sound system built into the desk.
The desk also sports a whopping 26 drawers, plenty of space to store all of your tools and tiny electronic components. Along the inside back, behind the screen deployment area, is a pin wall for organizing and hanging hand tools. When the desk is closed, an illuminated solar system display is viewable on the folded up top, an outrageous little design flourish that underscores the design virtuosity evident in this gorgeous yet functional piece of furniture.