Installation happening at the ‘MAKE it’ Precinct for Saturday Indesign, Melbourne! Excited!
So yes, I have been very quiet on the blog front.
The main reason is because of my connection with howwecreate.com and our intense prep for a special event: The ’MAKE it’ Precinct for Saturday Indesign, Melbourne.
‘MAKE it’ is presented by howwecreate.com and PALAMONT- art in manufacturing. The Precinct will be the hub for Manufacturers, Designers and Architects to come together and see making LIVE! There will be celebrated designers and artists teaming up with wood turners, metal spinners and rotor moulders to make special gifts for visitors. Very Special!
Design’s true contribution to the wider community is something money just can’t buy.
Beyond fashion, sales, price point and the hottest-newest item for sale, there is the intrinsic worth of design that transcends market forces.
Can you buy the true belief and passion, ingenuity, and provenance built into projects over time? Can you measure the value of direct relationships and knowledge grown through design process and investigation? What’s the current asking price for meaningful places of experience that grow within the memories of future generations? What is the creative capital that creative thinkers bring to the wider community?
We may be able to buy the products and projects of design thinking, but that doesn’t ensure the acquirer values their meaning and concept. Many Australian Retailers, Designers and Architects have conveyed their clients’ focus on price rather than an understanding of the background story to products and projects. Especially since the GFC, clients and buyers are caring more about price.
At some point in the recent past sell overtook soul.
How much do you sell those for? Where can I buy one? How much did that cost to make? When one answers the barrage of questions with ‘Actually you can’t buy these anywhere”, “That’s the only one in the world”, or ‘Our business plan for this product is not to sell it’.
There is an understandable silence. And then there is a smile and often a nod, and a ‘Wow’ exclamation. I have witnessed this response through the Tracelet Project.
Tracelet is a symbol, a talisman. It took about ten years for it to evolve into its present form. You can’t buy it anywhere. These are personal gifts that are not sold. You can only receive Tracelet once the story of its origin has been shared. Yes it’s a bracelet that’s meant to be worn.
But above all, Tracelet is to be treasured and to remind the wearer of the gift of knowledge, of process and a connection with the designer/maker.
So far I have personally given 400 Tracelet sets to people. In doing this I get something far more important than a few dollars in the bank.
I get to share Tracelet’s story directly, witness peoples’ responses, hear what they see and connect in a way that is not possible within the normal retail model.
It is my personal belief that a designer’s true gift rests not just in the physical objects and places that they have made through out their career. These are merely the perspiration from an endeavour to make everyday experiences better.
Our biggest contribution is the opportunity to inspire and move others (professionals, students and people from not only the design sector but all areas of the community) to think differently.
Our philosophies, sharing our process and knowledge and (yes) how these ideas are embedded in the environments and things that we design in the world, are integral to creating a spark; a spark that challenges people to think differently about what and why they do what they do in life, work and business.
Our true value is not the price that we get for our designs or the number we sell over time, but rather the relationships between people and personal connections made within all of our thinking.
Written for DESIGN ONLINE, The State Library of Queensland’s new online resource.
Design Online is delivered and curated by the State Library of Queensland’s Asia Pacific Design Library. The Asia Pacific Design Library is a shared space (physically and digitally) for industry, academia and the public to come together in the generation of new knowledge around design in the Asia Pacific.
Esteemed judges gathered in a secret location to select the 2012 Launch Pad Finalists.
The Launch Pad program provides the local and international design community with a vital avenue to nurture and celebrate original, authentic and innovative emerging Australian design, thus supporting and cultivating the careers of those product designers involved. http://launch-pad.com.au/about/
We were in for an action packed day of reviewing the 50 shortlisted prototypes from Australia’s emerging design talent. There was some great work and therefore in-depth discussion about the merits of each entry; functionality, materiality, originality, path to market and what exactly makes good design!
A lot of time and effort had gone into the prototypes! It was really great to see them all up close.
We selected the list of finalists to be showcased in the 2012 Launch Pad Finalists’ Exhibition as part of Saturday inDesign Melbourne (18 – 19 August 2012). Visit the official Launch Pad site for details.
GET THERE to hear the result and see the work!!!
It started rather early on Thursday for the team at How We Create and Palamont: art in manufacturing. The 20 foot shipping container, custom fitted with a rotational moulding machine, arrived at 5.30am. They had spent the previous week fitting it out, and had commissioned local Graffiti Artist John Ryder (through Jugglers Art Space Inc), to adorn the container envelope. Nice!
With the container placed the boys set about prepping and test running the machine.
For Brisbane Saturday Indesign How We Create and Palamont made (live on site) mini planters designed by Australian Designers Andrew Berry and Helen Kontouris, as well as Alexander Lotersztain’s new Rock cup. These were given to visitors on the day. The planters came with special herb seeds and bedding mix to give them a good start.
The process was utterly mesmerizing. People from different fields and backgrounds always become entranced with the process and want to know more. Visitors waiting patiently for their mini watched the process, listened to tunes, caught up on design news and had a few awesome hotdogs!
Congratulations How We Create and Palamont: art in manufacturing for such an awesome event and sharing the joy of manufacturing! Great photos by George Dedic from How We Create and Palamont.
Check out some of John Ryder’s process and Jugglers’ review of the day at Peter Breen’s blog.
Through the amazing support of How We Create and Palamont: Art in Manufacturing I was personally connected with specialist toolmaker and injection molder, Kevin Hopkinson from the Brisbane based Ashden Industries. With Kevin’s 25 years of experience in this area, the quality and detail of Tracelet was realised beyond expectation.
All I can say is thank you Kevin! What a pleasure working with you!
To everyone out there: SEEK OUT AND SUPPORT YOUR LOCAL MANUFACTURERS!!!
Usually it takes me about 1/3 of the original installation time to actually demount an exhibition. With the generous assistance of Simone Steel and Patricia Lee we completed the demount in just over 5 Hours!
I think that has to be a record given it took 3 Days to set up the TRACE exhibition at Pin-Up Project Space, Melbourne.
Big Thank You to Simone and Patricia. Go Girl Power!
It’s been another world-wind week of site visits, travel, more site visits and a bit of R&R in North Queensland. Early in the week, Norman Johnson (from How We Create and Palamont) and I hit the pavement to check out potential spaces for the upcoming Brisbane Indesign installation of TRACE. And yes we might have found one…
Next it was onto Sydney to site inspect Palamont’s latest project…One Central Park.
Palamont – Art in Manufacturing is currently involved in this major construction project designed by Jean Nouvel and Sir Norman Foster.
Palamont has been instrumental in designing, manufacturing and delivering external planters for the ground breaking vertical gardens that distinguish this project.
And then it was on to Cairns… Expression of Interest… Mission Beach… breath…rest… and relax.
Intra Screen (2008) was included in TRACE at Pin-Up Project Space because it is an essential key to understanding the way I think and make. Intra refers to the weave or module type. It is one of five weaving types within The Komodo Series. This series continues to inform my practice and reminds me about important relationships; scale and material; material and light; complex whole and simple parts; and ideas and their potential to inspire others.
The Komodo Series was launched in September 2008 at Living Edge’s Brisbane Show Room. The event was part of the 2008 Brisbane Indesign celebrations.
Natural forms, structures and geometries that stem from the beautiful qualities and simple properties of materials inspired me to make The Komodo Series. Through an experimental handmade process initial 3-D studies in cardboard were transformed into larger objects and surfaces in a range of materials including plywood, polypropylene and stainless steel. The Komodo Series makes visible my playful testing process.
The actual modules (such as Intra and Plexa) allow the individual to experiment, reinvent and personalize their surroundings. The parts can be assembled into multiple configurations and objects including screens, lights and sculptural forms. Each change in combination, size and material creates subtle variations to light, shadow, density and use.
It was great to see Intra Screen within the environment of Pin-Up Project Space for TRACE.
‘From little things big things grow’ (thank you Paul Kelly and Kev Carmody) and will continue to grow and change and reveal their true potential over time. This rings true for me every time I make, install and witness any part of the The Komodo Series.
I feel all of my work is in a state of becoming. In this way each is a sketch or study for something larger, smaller, in a different material for a different function or simply to be enjoyed in a new way. Cameron Bruhn (the now Editorial Director of Architecture Media) succinctly described my process in his review of my very first solo exhibition RECENT in 2002 in the following way:
FORMS WERE GENERATED UNCONSCIOUSLY BY Waterson’s engagement with the techniques and material of her craft. Like the architect Louis Kahn, she asked the brick what it wanted to be. Waterson’s process answered the question. She probed the physical limits of her materials through a study of structural forces, repetition, spatial manipulation, and scale. She probed the metaphoric through association, subversion, and memory.
extract from The Architecture of Being by Cameron Bruhn 01/02 Artichoke
The small studies pictured above are a selection of my firsts. They are a special record of the very first time my feelings came into being through materials. They are a constant link to the essential ideas, qualities and forces that inform my process and, like a ribbon on my finger, remind me of why I make.
Within the range of studies displayed in TRACE are models for Array 2007 (that became the 20 x 30 metre RAIA Ceiling Installation for the Queensland Architecture Awards) and also little constructions for future works, maybe to become jewellery, screens, ceilings or lights… or all of the above.
All of the studies are hand-made except one related set Trace 2012 and Crown 2010. They are my first experiments using SLS and 3D Printing. I worked with architect Domenic Mesiti to ‘trace’ Crown (Part of the Komodo Series), simplifying the parts down to a continuous surface; like draping a soft material or skin over the bones of the original form. Trace at the presented scale is close to the size of a bracelet – but could be scaled up or down. Patricia Lee, Talented Product Design Officer at Palamont, prototyped TRACE bracelet for the exhibition.
Special thank you to Domenic Mesiti and Patricia Lee for their amazing skill, expertise and professionalism.