Tonight I will be competing against a 3D printer to make a model of Big Ben on the BBC 2 The Culture Show at 10pm 30/01/13.
2012 was a very busy year for me, probably my busiest. I remember starting the year thinking that I had no idea what I will do in 2012. Then Jaffa Cakes commissioned me to nibble their biscuit/cakes in the shape of something. Around that time I tweeted ‘I want to race against a 3D printer to make the same thing’ a curator saw it and invited me to compete in Milan. I defeated the 3D printer and won a trophy. While I was in Milan I spent 5 days making something out of sticks and tape in front of the public. On return to London I was invited to the V&A museum to have a rematch against a British 3D Printer. A bit later I was asked to create a souvenir of East London and had the idea to make a vinyl record recording the sounds of East London makers at work. The record was cut about half a mile from my house in Hackney. BBC radio 4′s Today programme visited me and I talked about the sounds and the history behind the makers. It even got played on radio in Tokyo.
In September I had a solo show at KK Outlet Gallery, I decided to make a book of my invention drawings and released a little animation. A little earlier I had been commissioned to make new versions of my shoe field for Global Footprint in Northamptonshire. I was also commissioned to create a pair of shoes. After thinking about Dorothy in The wizard of Oz I decided to try to create some shoes that could navigate the wearer home. These shoes appeared all over the place in mainstream newspapers and tv such as The Discovery channel. Meanwhile I was asked to do something interesting with 3M tape. Finally I was asked to create something that would be suspended across a street inthe Seven Dials area of London. I made an arch of birdcages to represent the past history of pet shops in the area.
This year I’m once again unsure what direction I will go in, I might do some more sketched inventions for a start.
I had the pleasure of talking to Marcus Fairs, editor of dezeen.com on stage at the 100% Design exhibition in September about some of my work including GPS shoes, the value of sketching and thinking outside the normal.
You can see the full Dezeen post here
My book of invention ideas seems to be selling well, about two thirds through the 1000 printed. I had a lovely comment from Thomas Heatherwick, designer of the London olympic cauldron amongst other brilliant things. He kindly wrote, “Dominic Wilcox’s drawings aren’t just witty and beautifully drawn, they are serious challenges to the real world to keep looking at itself with innocent eyes, wondering what else is possible” He mentioned a favourite of his was the motorised ladder below.
Christmas is nearly here and if you want gifts to keep your relatives entertained after their Turkey why not buy my signed book Variations on Normal HERE for only £8 so I can buy myself a Christmas pudding. Worldwide delivery is no problem but be quick for the post before christmas.
I must make more effort putting it into shops but it is available in London at Magma near Covent Garden, Artwords on Broadway Market, Theo at Somerset House arcade, The Serpentine Gallery book shop and in Edinburgh at Analogue Bookshop.
Or how about my Sounds of Making in East London vinyl record with mp3. See here.
I was commissioned by Dezeen and Shaftesbury Seven Dials to create a sculpture to be suspended across Neal street in the Seven Dials area of London. My research of the area revealed that in 1879 Charles Dickens Jnr described Seven Dials in his book ‘Dicken’s Dictionary of London’ as a place where many bird shops and bird cage makers could be found. “Every variety of pigeon, fowl, and rabbit can be found here, together with rare birds, such as hawks and owls… Here and there are shops fi lled with cages.”
I decided to make an arch of ghost like birdcages to reference the memory of the birds and the shops of that time. Each cage is left open in remembrance of the birds long departed from the area.
I have put together over one hundred of my odd yet strangely logical invention drawings into a little book. You can see some of the ideas below. They all come from a room inside my head that I like to go to every now and again. A signed book can be bought for the bargain amount of £8 on my web shop here. I’ve had 1000 printed and they seem to be selling fast.
‘Dominic Wilcox’s drawings aren’t just witty and beautifully drawn, they are serious challenges to the real world to keep looking at itself with innocent eyes, wondering what else is possible.’
Thomas Heatherwick, (designer of the London Olympic cauldron amongst other innovative work.)
In addition to the book I made a little animation by connecting some of the book’s ideas into a mini story. Hope you enjoy.
Also if you are in London come down to KK Outlet where I have an exhibition on.
Filed under: Drawings
I was commissioned by the Global Footprint project in Northamptonshire, a place famous for shoe making, to create some shoes. I decided to make a pair of shoes that can navigate you wherever you wished, no matter where you are in the world. I thought about the Wizard of Oz and how Dorothy could click her shoes together to go home. After uploading your required destination to the shoes via a piece of custom made mapping software and a USB cable, the GPS, which is embedded in the heel, is activated by a heel click. It then communicates to the wearer via a ring of LED lights to point in the required direction. The shoe with the GPS wirelessly communicates with the right shoe that has a progress bar of lights to show how close you are to the destination.
The Shoe is connected to a laptop with the mapping software. The user plots their destination on a map and uploads it to the shoe. The USB connection also charges the battery in each shoe.
The progress bar starts with one red light at the beginning of the journey and ends on the green light when you arrive. The correct direction to walk is shown by the illumination of one of the LED’s on the circle.
I made an illustration that was etched onto the soles. The red leather and stitcing is a little reference to Dorothy’s red ruby shoes.
For more pictures and information visit www.dominicwilcox.com/gpsshoes.htm
Filed under: Drawings
I have an exhibition of my work on at KK Outlet gallery, London, running until the 26th of September. I’ve got new work never seen before on show as well as recent and past work and all my videos. I’ve even launched a book of my invention drawings and an animation. So it’s been very busy recently.
The show is open all through the London Design Festival and should be mentioned in the guides.
7th – 26th September
9 – 6pm Monday Friday, 12 – 5pm Saturday.
Dominic Wilcox – Variations on Normal
42 Hoxton Square
One of the things I’m showing is a personal collection of oddities that I own. For example on the left is this WW2 Japanese Airforce ceramic fire extinguisher. Designed to be filled with sand and thrown out of an airplane on to fires caused by bombing below. I was told by the previous owner that the technique wasn’t very effective.
Next to it is a wedgewood teapot that can lean back to use its internal tea leaf strainer.
I also have a pair of shoes that can guide you home to post about soon and an animation and book.
With thanks to Richard Shed Studio who designed the layout, graphics and design of the exhibition.