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The Elliptical Table

The thought behind the Elliptical Collection was to make something fun, and perhaps a little odd, whilst exposing the natural elegance of the ellipse

Celebrated British inventor and designer Dr John C Taylor OBE FREng, creator of the famous Corpus Chronophage in Cambridge, has created an elegant set of tableware and furniture: the Elliptical Collection.

The Elliptical Collection and the Dragon Chronophage were recently displayed together at Design Shanghai, China’s premier design event, and received a fantastic reception from press and public who were enamoured by the beauty of the design and the quality of the materials.

The ellipse is a fundamental element of the laws of physics that hold our Solar System together and make our existence possible. Inspired by this simple yet vital shape, Dr Taylor has created the Elliptical Collection, a set of crockery and glassware with a design based on the ellipse.

Speaking about his inspiration, Dr Taylor said, “We are living in the greatest age of technology and innovation that the world has ever seen and it occurred to me that it was a shame that all tableware is made to the same conventional, circular design.

“I’ve always said that there’s no sense complaining about something unless one is willing to make a difference, so I took it upon myself to make tableware that breaks the mould.

“The thought behind the Elliptical Collection was to make something fun, and perhaps a little odd, whilst exposing the natural elegance of the ellipse.”

The rejection of conventional circular design creates an organic shape that is naturally easy on the eye. There is also, however, a practical benefit – an elliptical glass sits more comfortably in the hand than a circular one.

The table’s distinctive pattern centres on a sun-like figure, and the overlapping ellipses around it are reminiscent of the orbits of the planets in the Solar System. It seats twelve, or eighteen with the addition of extra sections.

Designed in the Isle of Man and housed in Arragon Mooar, the elliptical country house that Dr Taylor built for himself, these distinctive pieces are the product of a consuming passion.

Just as Dr Taylor pays homage to the simplicity of physics with his Elliptical Collection, he pays tribute to the complexity of nature with his Plum Blossom Wall Lights.

A creation of gold, silver and hand-patinated copper, it was enamelled by the same jeweller who worked on the Corpus Chronophage and the Dragon Chronophage.

Each flower is handmade and no two are the same.

A masterpiece of electronics allows each individual wall light to be controlled independently. The LEDs can shine in any colour of the spectrum, and can be pre-programmed to perform fantastic light shows.

The lights exhibit practical as well as artistic innovation: each LED can be individually replaced. Dr Taylor and his team know of no other product that can do this. Prices are available on request.


Media information provided by Famous Publicity. For further information please contact George Murdoch on 07834 643 977 or email or contact Tina Fotherby on 07703 409 622 or email

About Dr John C Taylor OBE

Dr John C Taylor OBE was born in Buxton in Derbyshire in 1936. Having spent six years living in Canada during his childhood, he returned home towards the end of the Second World War and attended King William School on the Isle of Man before studying Natural Sciences at Cambridge University.

After finishing his education he took a job at Otter Controls, founded by his father, and began working in bi-metal. His work with these controls led to Dr Taylor designing the thermostat systems that are used in almost two billion kettles and small household appliances.

Dr Taylor has also conducted a lot of research in the subject of horology. His admiration of John Harrison, an early pioneer of clocks and time-keeping, led him to design and help build the Corpus Chronophage, a three metre-high clock that lives on the exterior of the Corpus Christi College building at Cambridge University.

Dr Taylor has been the recipient of many honours including, but not limited to, the following:

- Appointment as an Officer of the Order of the British Empire in the 2011 New Year honours list for his services to business and horology
- Appointed as a Fellow of the Royal Academy of Engineering for his outstanding contribution to the advancement of British engineering, innovation and commerce
- Being conferred an Honorary Doctorate from UMIST

In his spare time, Dr Taylor also has a keen interest in aviation, having been a private pilot for over sixty years. Taught by his father as a child, he has so far amassed over 5,000 hours of flying time.

Dr Taylor is on Twitter at

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