June 29, 2016
In these days of technological abundance we often take for granted that all the devices around us should just work, even though few people really knows what powers them. Interactive experience designers Meret Vollenweider and Wasabii Ng attempt to unveil this mystery by designing three "Inefficiency Machines" which reminds us of the effort required to make simple machines work.
First up is a machine with a microphone connected to a hairdryer, which requires the user to yell as hard and for as long as possible before it is activated. Another machine features an enormous mortar and pestle, where the user needs to pound away repetitively for some time before a light bulb lights up satisfyingly. Our favourite is a trampoline wired up to a TV screen which only comes to life if the user jumps for long enough. Now that's an idea for the gym. With all three machines the user can hit a button after the workout and it will print a slip with details including the length of the session and an efficiency score.
Whilst this ridiculously fun installation is unlikely to solve the energy crisis it nevertheless makes you think about the effort required to make even simple devices work. Never will we take that cup of Nespresso coffee for granted again.
Meret Vollenweider and Wasabii Ng are graduates of the Royal College of Art (MA Information Experience Design) and the Inefficiency Machines is part of their graduation project.
It is not easy to find furniture which rewards users for their effort but we could recommend the Chariot trolley from Casamania and the Bordbar airplane trolley. Both are great fun to push around and hugely practical too. Or what about the concrete Soft Edge Stool from Lyon Beton for a mini weight-lifting workout?
We love the way Meret Vollenweider's light bulb lights up once there is enough pounding of the mortar and pestle. The Maman suspension light from Seletti would look great as part of her installation (on a grander scale); or perhaps some monkey lights (also from Seletti) to make it even more surreal?
After all this effort we need some accessories which is truly rewarding, such as the Double O ice bucket from Ghidini 1961, the Hard Rocket candle holder from Seletti and the Spire coat hooks from Finell, all in bright shiny gold finish.
September 04, 2018
Those of a certain age, swept up in a nostalgic wave for the 1980s and 1990s, would do well to collect the remarkable ceramic objects created by Osaka-based Toshiya Masada.
July 02, 2018
As evidence of the all-conquering power of words, multi-disciplinary artist Ravi Amar Zupa created a series of steampunk-esque sculptures of weapons made from old typewriter parts.
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