As part of the Making Together exhibition in Milan I had invited the public to donate sticks of all types and sizes which I planned to tape to a chair and build a network of sticks during six days of Milan design week. It was to be an improvised creation where I would decide how it would grow while I was making it. It’s quite exciting to start from nothing and not be sure what is going to happen, particularly when in front of an expectant on looking audience.
I placed a spotlight I found at the exhibition and pointed it onto the white wall to create shadows.
Half way through week.
The idea I came to Milan with was to build a bridge of sticks between two chairs but I changed my mind and wanted to build on one chair with only the legs of the chair touching the ground. I wanted to see how far I could push the strength of the tape and balance of the chair.
I decided to draw the shadow onto the wall with the same tape.
Me in the sticks.
On the third day I was told that the chair had toppled over in the night and so I strengthened with more tape. I added a chair on one side to try to balance out the weight.
Sometimes I would come into the room and some members of the public were attaching stick to the ‘tree’. This wasn’t part of my plan but I was tempted to see what they did. Collaboration with the public can be interesting but it is important that they understand the rules and restrictions of what needs to be done. I ended up having to remove the 5 or 6 additions as they weren’t strongly taped or in the best positions for a good structure. I decided to continue with just me adding things but the public bringing the sticks throughout the day.
The shadow moved continuously due to the weight of new sticks being added, but I just drew over the new shadows.
At the end the stick structure was moved to a new room leaving the shadow drawing as a permanent piece.
I am happy to say my gloves cast from my own hands are in the excellent exhibition ‘The Power of Making’ at London’s V&A museum.
“Power of Making celebrates the role of making in our lives by presenting an eclectic selection of over 100 exquisitely crafted objects. The exhibition is a cabinet of curiosities showing works by both amateurs and leading makers from around the world, presenting a range of skills with imaginative and spectacular results.” Curated by Daniel Charny
KKoutlet recently approached me to take part in their exhibition ‘Object Abuse’. The challenge was to ‘take an everyday object, remould, rebuild and repurpose it to create an entirely new item, using as little additional materials as possible.’
One day I was walking through an art shop and looked at the brushes. They seemed pleasant objects so I decided to come up with something using one of them. I remembered how I used to forget to wash paint brushes after using them and then would find them hard and unusable the next day. After quite a few trials and mistakes I managed to make something useful, a coat hook. Handily there is a hole at the top of the handle for the screw.
My idea this week is an accessory to transform the whizzbang iPad into a simple practical object that may be useful around the home, in this case a bookend.
I will probably buy an iPad at some point. It is a beautiful object and is apparently wonderful to use. I don’t think I’ll read books on it as a paper book has higher resolution text, is about four times lighter and doesn’t need a battery. The iPad will definitely be a success as an entertainment device, looking at photos, reading an e-magazine, watching a movie and visiting websites, but whether it will become a ‘useful’ thing is a bit of an unknown. Hopefully the people who make the software apps will come up with something that turns the iPad from a delightful luxury item into an essential piece of equipment. Maybe one day we will look back and think ‘what exactly did we do before the iPad?’ or maybe we’ll think ‘Well, it made a stylish bookend’. Your comments are very welcome…
You can see my other Apple related work I did for Esquire magazine’s 75th anniversary edition a while back here. If you’re new to my site check out the other fifty ideas I’ve had by going to the home page and scrolling down. Follow future ideas via Twitter/Facebook/RSS/Email
My idea this week is a two way toothpaste, ideal for those who get angry with their partner for squeezing the toothpaste from the front. Simply open the other end and squeeze from the back as demonstrated below. Also quite useful for getting the last of the paste out of the bottom.
I admit that I squeeze from the front but I hope that by recognising the problem I have taken the first steps towards becoming a better person. With thanks to my excellent illustrator friend Clare Mallison for the use of her hand. For those who like this idea see my previous genetically modified egg or my home stats doorbell. <<Follow more ideas on Twitter/Facebook, © Dominic Wilcox.
Filed under: design
Here is a new project I have done called ‘By a thread’, random colours of thread are hand wound onto a wooden walking stick.
You can see more pics and a video on my main project site dominicwilcox.com
Filed under: design, ideas | Tags: hill walking invention drawing illustration
<< Follow me on facebook, twitter, rss or email
Buy a print here