The enduring simplicity of the design of the ‘HV1’, however, belies the underlying complexity of the engineering. Concealed within the tap is a maddeningly difficult interlocking system of pivoting bearings, and flow regulators that provide precise control of the proportion of hot and cold water. The physical structure, too, is a seamless engineering feat of fully flush surfaces whose creation involves skillful and experienced workmanship and soldering.
The universality of Jacobsen’s original design is so timeless that the ‘HV1’ has not only changed very little in the ensuing half century, it has also been a staple of Vola’s precisely edited catalogue – a full-throttled expression, if nothing else, of the adage that good design never goes out of date or style. The model has been expanded to a wide product range focused on a modular approach, allowing for more flexibility – the handles, spouts, cover plates and accessories can be combined in countless configurations to satisfy a designer’s brief – while staying true to Jacobsen’s original ideals.