지금 우리는 새로운 재료를 찾아서 여행을 떠납니다.
친환경적이면서 손쉽게 구할수 있는 그리고 그것의 가변성과 확장성 여기에
다루기 쉬운 재료를 찾아 봅니다. 여기 멕시코 디자이너 페나도가 찾은
건조된 수세미과 식물은 그것에 부합되는 재미있는 재료로써 다양한 디자인에 활용됩니다.
연한 갈색의 스폰지와 같은 재질감은 때로는 거칠게, 때로는 소프트하게
사용되며 각기 다른 제품을 탄생시킵니다.
먼저 얇게 슬라이스된 여러개의 수세미는 반투과성을 이용한 가변적인
파티션의 막으로 활용됩니다. 그것은 램프의 갓에도 비슷한 물성으로
사용됩니다. 또한 여러개의 켜를 겹겹이 쌓아 쿠션감을 살린 책상은
어떠한 충진재보다 안정적인 물성을 제공합니다. 물론 자연적인 성향을 그래도 살린
화분이나 작은 통은 수세미과 식물의 내츄럴함을 물씬 풍기는 제품으로 구현되기도 합니다.
이렇듯 재료에 대한 상상력은 그 활용을 뛰어넘는 다양한 제품으로 구현되며
디자인의 경계를 확장시킵니다. 우리주변에 이만한 재료가 또 있을까요?
reviewed by SJ
At times, designers venture into self directed projects, envisioning the potential of a quick mental image and transforming into a collection of objects. The journey drives them to research and experiment into the qualities of a type ofmaterial and push it to its limit, hoping to figure out how it can be controlled. Mexican designer Fernando Laposee, a recent graduate from Central Saint Martins, in London took on the challenge of exploring the qualities of a loofah or luffa, a tropical and sub-tropical vine that contains a network of xylem or fibers utilized to create kitchen and bath products.
Loofah is an edible fruit (related to the pumpkin and cucumber) popular in Asia, which grows vertically attaching itself to trees. It is harvested with little impact on the soil, reproduces rapidly and leaves little to no roots behind. This sustainable fruit is perfect for extensive use and a dynamic array of uses. With only 6 months harvest time and up to 8,000 of them per hectare, it seemed only natural to explore its qualities to give it a new use and new value.
Laposee wanted to use loofah and exploit its natural qualities: lightness, translucency, heat insulation, texture and shock absorption which when mixed with cement and wood resulted in a pleasant balance as the natural tones blend well. Loofah itself was flattened, sewn together and shaped to extend its possibilities. The exploration allowed Fernando to envision the products and how he could make the material the protagonist rather than the object itself. This approach lends the series of pieces a sense of consistency and gels it as a group. Collaborating with a local carpenter in Mexico City, the designer was able to shape each piece carefully using the craftsman’s experience.
Fernando Laposee shows us how loofah
translates well into a freestanding partition which when placed near a
light source, diffuses it yet allows you to see through. As a desk, he
uses loofah to give depth and the perceived notion of
weight to the piece; also ideal for mobility. Another of our favorite
pieces are the planter vases that extend the look of its function to the
natural environment. Last but not least, we adore the terra-cotta and loofah
combination as the contrast plays beautifully. Both molded natural
materials come together and show the careful artesian process from the
hand of the craftsman and the mind of the designer.
We know projects like this continue to push the envelope in the design process and allow other designers to imagine their next self directed project. Sourcing from what is sustainable and available, we can create functional and aesthetically pleasing objects that demonstrate what we do with our lives and how we use our tools to maintain a sense of balance with our environment.
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