Object Therapy, my transformative repair research project with ANU and Hotel Hotel has completed its first stop of its Australian tour at the Australian Design Centre (ADC). Its now packed away and on route to Noosa Regional Gallery for exhibition in December.

While it was at the ADC, I was on a panel with designers and Object Therapy repairers Henry Wilson, Naomi Taplin, the jeweller Bridget Kennedy and ABC’s Simon Marnie. We had a lively discussion with the audience including contributions from Kasi Albert – a conservator whose paper on historical ceramic repair using metal staples and rivets I had recently re-read in preparation for a collaborative repair work with Trent Jansen and Kyoko Hashimoto, now exhibited at Nishi Gallery in Canberra. This was one of Trent’s Jugaad plates that broke en route from India to Australia – Kyoko and I repaired it with sterling silver rivets we sourced from a old Georgian serving spoon. I’m going to write more about this project in another post, but here is a preview of it at Nishi Gallery.

Kyoko and I also did a panel talk with ADC director Lisa Cahill at the City of Sydney’s Surry Hills library. Though we had some technical problems with slides and video, it was great to obtain feedback from the Surry Hills locals. I think many were expecting a more traditional repair workshop talk, and were surprised at some of the artistic depth and human research put into Object Therapy.

Design journalist and critic Penny Craswell has written about my and Kyoko’s other recent repair collaboration for Object Therapy, Elizabeth’s Knitting Needle, in which I discuss some of the theoretical aspects of transformative repair and its potential for improving sustainability. With co-authors Nik Rubenis and Andy Marks, I’m currently preparing a paper on this for the Product Lifetimes And The Environment Conference later this year in Deflt, NL.

UNSW’s Media Room also did a feature on the Knitting Needle transformation, which also links to the video explainer I did with UNSW and Fairfax. This was my first time using a teleprompter – a bit weird. The video features works from Object Therapy, some of my own transformative repair works, plus an interesting bowl I purchased in Taiwan, repaired with metal rivets by Lai Ji-Xian of Old Jiu Fen Street, probably Taiwan’s only ceramic rivet repair practitioner.

And just recently, UNSW external relations have released some promo videos with me, my colleagues and students discussing design at UNSW Art & Design. The videos do quite well to explain the particular kind of conceptual x craft focus we provide at our Paddington campus.

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In June and September of 2016, myself, as chief investigator, with Niklavs Rubenis and Andy Marks as co-investigators, interviewed 30 or so participants in the human research project Object Therapy. This research was conducted under UNSW ethics approval HC16145 – Object Therapy: an investigation into the consumer culture of broken objects and their repair by design.

The interview process was designed using a hybrid semi-structured/in-depth interview methodology to facilitate the Reissman model of narrative-based analysis. Practically this concerns using semi-structured questions, but allowing interviewees time to free-associate their experiences in-depth, in ways that may develop previously non-conscious understandings of their possessions and their relations.

The Stage 1 interview questions were sequenced:

1 How did you come to acquire this object?
2 How long have you owned or used it, and how did it break?
3 How long have you kept it since it broke?
4 Is your relationship with this object linked to any particular aspect in your life?
5 When the object broke, how did you feel, or what were your first thoughts?
6 Have you changed these thoughts since?
7 In regard to consumer products breaking, how do you regard the differing responsibilities of people such as the designer, the manufacturer, the seller, the consumer, or anyone else?
8 In what way would you like to see it repaired?

The Stage 2 interview questions were sequenced:

1. Since we last saw you, did you experience any feelings or concerns about how object may be repaired? (Or from not being in possession of it?)
2. What do you think of the repaired object now? (How different is it from your expectation?)
3. How would you now value this object?
4. Would you sell it, if you had the opportunity? Do you think you could put a cash price on it?
5. Would you repeat the process (and if so, would you prefer it done differently in anyway?)
6. Did participating in this process change the way you think about other broken objects you own or have owned? (Or change the way you think about products, consumption, waste or repair in general?)

To facilitate in-depth conversation and narrative flow the research investigators added questions as necessary and ignored questions if the answer had been provided in response to a previous question. As can be seen from the full interviews and their excerpts, much of the interviews were accordingly free-ranging and reflective by design.

The full interviews can be accessed at this link. (Please note that 1st stage interviews are categorised by the name of the repairer selected for that interviewee’s object. 2nd stage interviews are in their own subfolder.)

Interview excerpts can be viewed courtesy of Hotel Hotel’s Vimeo channel for Object Therapy. That page can be accessed directly, but I recommend using individual interview links from either the online Object Therapy catalogue or the downloadable PDF version.


Riessman, Catherine K..2001. “Analysis of Personal Narratives”. In Gubrium, J. F., & In Holstein, J. A. (2002). Handbook of interview research: Context & method. Thousand Oaks, Calif: Sage Publications, pp. 695–7.

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New works for Sophie Gannon Gallery’s Design Works 01

by guy keulemans on March 14, 2017


On Thursday 16th March the Sophie Gannon Gallery is opening Design Works 01 as part of Melbourne Design Week.

Kyoko Hashimoto and I have collaborated on two new works for this show: Two & One White Cubes, a new iteration of Slashboxes, and Terra Rings, which develops from Kyoko’s use of industrial components in jewellery.

The works are conceptually linked. Both works explore the role of material in design, and specifically the tension within ‘hylomorphic‘ expressions of form, in which material is subjected and diminished by formal properties (such as straight edges, flat surfaces, glossy mouldings and ‘perfect’ forms).

As a result, both works feature the industrially informed, manufactured look, contrasted with a ‘messy’, complex and ‘natural’ materiality. Of course, materials for both expressions are extracted from the same sources, and as indicated in this, rather extensive, materials description, often petrochemical and/or animal in origin.

Separate concept and materials documents are available for the Terra Rings and the White Cubes.

I’m also contributing to another Melbourne Design Week event, 26 Original Fakes, developed by Friends & Associates in which I explore similar concepts, but in the context of replica furniture.

Both events are discussed in this article by Stephen Todd of the Australian Financial Review.

Further Details:


14 MARCH – 1 APRIL 2017

 Presented as part of the NGV’s Melbourne Design Week, Designwork 01 at Sophie Gannon Gallery will be the first exhibition in an ongoing series dedicated to presenting the best contemporary Australian design.

Designwork 01 will feature the best designers practicing in Australia, many of whom contribute to the design field on a global scale, designing commercial products for major design firms including Cappelini and Mooi. These designers practice through an inquiry or set of ideas, much like artists. Participating designers include:

Ash Allen

Adam Goodrum

Dale Hardiman

Trent Jansen

Guy Keulemans and Kyoko Hashimoto

Ben Landau and Lucile Sciallano

David Mutch

Elliat Rich

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Object Therapy to tour

by guy keulemans on February 13, 2017

Amy and ANU’s broken Fred Ward chair

Much of my 2016 was spent developing Object Therapy, a human research and participatory design project in collaboration with Andy Marks of Hotel Hotel’s Fix and Make program, with assistance from co-curators Niklavs Rubenis (Australian National University) and Dan Honey (Hotel Hotel), with photographer  Lee Grant (Hotel Hotel).

We invited members of the general public to come in for an interview and hand over broken objects to us, that we then distributed to 30 national and international artists and designers. We held at exhibition of these works at Hotel Hotel in October last year.

We are very pleased to announce that the project has now been funded to tour around Australia courtesy of a Visions of Australia grant application we developed with the Australian Design Centre (ADC). The first stage of the tour is at the ADC in Sydney, opening 23rd of March 2017.

Here is a link to the PDF catalogue:

Object Therapy is a Hotel Hotel project curated by Guy Keulemans, Andy Marks, Niklavs Rubenis and Dan Honey.

Project designers
Guy Keulemans and Andy Marks

Research investigators
Guy Keulemans, Andy Marks and Niklavs Rubenis

Lee Grant

In addition to develop Object Therapy, I also contributed two works, here and here, and I’ll be discussing these works and the project in general on April 29th at the event Design on Show: Object Therapy at the  City of Sydney Library in Surry Hills.

Including the ADC, the exhibition will visit:

Australian Design Centre, Sydney: 23 March – 17 May 2017
Noosa Regional Gallery: 30 Nov 2017 – 22 Jan 2018
South Australian School of Art Gallery, Adelaide: 13 Feb – 17 Mar 2018
Alcoa Mandurah Art Gallery, WA: 4 May – 23 June 2018
Design Tasmania, Launceston: 7 Jul – 10 Oct 2018
Lake Macquarie City Art Gallery, Newcastle: 26 Oct – 2 Dec 2018
Lismore Regional Gallery: 13 Jul – 8 Sept 2019
Tamworth Regional Gallery: 20 Sept – 17 Nov 2019

Details on the public program to come.

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In the past month or so I’ve been on radio and television.

For my human research project on repair, Object Therapy, I was interviewed on the 24th May byGenevieve Jacobs for ABC 666 Canberra. Then, on June 25th the day of our first stage interviews, ABC National News interviewed Andy Marks and I, and that when out on television that night, Australia wide. Subsequently, AJ+, the culture wing of Al Jazeera news, took it up for global distribution.

Object Therapy has now entered its second stage, in which broken objects obtained from participants are distributed to designers, artists  and other specialists, for transformative repair.

In June I wrote an article for the Conversation, based on my paper from the Unmaking Waste conference last year, about the problem of steel reinforced concrete. This was later republished on I Fucking Love Science, and last Tuesday 5th July I spoke to Kathryn Ryan for Radio NZ  and then with Sonya Feldhoff for 891 ABC Adelaide, about the article.

Generally, these radio interviews focussed on the technical aspects of reinforced concrete, which is not my area and not actually the focus of the article, which instead concerned the the way we sense and perceive reinforced concrete, via aesthetic theory. However, the very basic and non-original facts about the inherent non-sustainability of reinforced concrete from material and construction  science, that I used to simply ground my theorisation, appears novel and even controversial to the general public. Unfortunately, this just seems to reflect the absence of scrutiny and self-reflection on the use of reinforced concrete by the construction industries and disciplines.

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Files from the Illustrator workshop of Tuesday 12th April 2016 can be downloaded from this link:


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Perfect Imperfect book launch and exhibition

by guy keulemans on April 1, 2016

KEULEMANS, Archaeologic photo by Sharyn Cairns copy

Last year I was pleased to be invited by Karen McCartney to contribute to her new book ‘Perfect Imperfect’.  Subsequently my works Copper Ice Cream Scoops and Archaeologic Vases were beautifully shot by Melbourne photographer Sharyn Cairns.

I’m delighted to say the book is now out, and my works will be exhibited at the book launch on the 27th April till 8 May, at the Nishi Gallery in Canberra, alongside works by some really great designers.

Above and below are photos by Sharyn, and below that are details and copy.

KEULEMANS Copper Ice Cream Scoops, image by Sharyn Cairns copy

‘Perfect Imperfect’ is an exhibition of perfectly imperfect objects collected from around the world; curated by Karen McCartney, Sharyn Cairns and Glen Proebstel in collaboration with Hotel Hotel.

The exhibition features local and international designers and artisans whose work best exemplifies the theme including UNSW Art & Design’s Guy Keulemans, as well as Don Cameron, Martyn Thompson, Alison Coates, Lucy McCrae and Jacqui Fink.

‘Perfect Imperfect’ springs from the pages of a new book by the same name by editor and author Karen McCartney, with photography by Sharyn Cairns and styling by Glen Proebstel. The book and exhibition are a celebration of accident, curation, collection, hesitation, collaboration, reuse and reimagining; and brings together contemporary design with well-worn objects to explore the established aesthetic of wabi-sabi in a new way. The exhibition is firmly sited in the now – where digital technologies and handmade processes are being merged to produce original objects and ideas.

Nishi Gallery
New Acton Precinct
17 Kendal Lane, Canberra,
April 28 – May 8
Mon – Fri: 11:00 am – 3:00 pm
Sat – Sun: 11:00 am – 4:00 pm

Opening Wednesday 27th April at the Nishi Gallery, 6 – 8pm.
RSVP to rsvp@hotel-hotel.com by 20th April.

… and you can buy the book too

Perfect Imperfect Exhibition invite

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Profile in Wood Planet

by guy keulemans on March 7, 2016


This month I’ve been profiled in a Korean magazine “Wood Planet”. The editor was interested in my CNC-milled bamboo chest of drawers/hidden bookshelf ‘LKBP’.

Yes I did point out that bamboo is actually a grass and not a wood.

If you read Korean, here is an online version.


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The art of Sho-o’s hammer

by guy keulemans on December 16, 2015

Sho-o was once going to a Cha-no-yu with Rikyu when he caught sight of a flower vase with two handles in a curio shop. He thought he would go in and buy it on his way back and did so only to find that Rikyu had forestalled him. Being invited to a Tea some while after by Rikyu it occurred to him that this vase would be used, and so it turned out, for there it stood in the Tokonoma, but it had one of its handles broken off. ‘Ah,’ he said ‘then I shall have no need of the hammer I brought in my sleeve to knock it off, for I could not bear the idea of it being used with both.’

– from Tsutsui, ‘The role of anecdotes in the transmission of tea traditions’, pp. 44–5., cited in Tim Cross’ Ideologies of Japanese Tea, p. 238.

I wish I could take a hammer to some of that Ikea/replica/mass-market furniture I see in my friend’s homes. Not that its the same thing.

Its amazing to imagine a culture where Sho-o’s intent might be acceptable. Perhaps we need to embrace damage as an aesthetic expression to better value our possessions?

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three iPhones with broken screens, work in progress

by guy keulemans on June 24, 2015

Last month, my partner dropped her iPhone and broke its screen. I have previously seen many, many iPhones with broken screens. They seem to be fairly common among university students, who maybe lack the resources or time to repair them, or are otherwise content to use the phones, as is, while they still function.

Its interesting to me because of something Jonathan Ive, their designer, once said about product design:

“A complex product being made is like one of those films of a glass smashing that they play backwards – all the bits come together in the right place at exactly the right time to be assembled into this thing – it’s amazing.”
– Jonathan Ive, quoted in Thomas Thwaites’ The Toaster Project (2011)

To me it seems, when the literal glass of a complex product breaks, the figurative glass in that analogy also starts to shatter, and we become a little more aware of the many complex things, conditions and relations involved in the design and manufacturing of consumer electronic products. A glimpse of an interior screw or circuit hints at the many dozens or hundreds of metals and materials used in a design, some of them sourced from African conflict zones or processed from petrochemical products. We may even intuit the action of the hands and fingers that assembled the many tiny parts together. At the least, the broken screen conveys an expression of the product as waste, pulling us closer to the consideration of the demise of the product and its future in landfill, perhaps aggressively stripped and pyrochemically processed for its more valuable materials first.

Using some broken iPhones sourced from friends, I produced these images to investigate this concept.

The content of larger or bolded text are former iPhone slogans. The content of the smaller text has been widely reported from news articles, such as those linked above, also, concerning blood metals, here and here, concerning wage slavery in Asia, here and here, and concerning difficulties of reuse, repair, obsolescence and waste, here, here, here and here. Among dozens of other similar articles. There are other aspects of iPhone production I have not addressed in the text – for example the huge amounts of water their manufacturing requires. On the other hand, its important to understand the problem wholistically too. For example, the suicides at Foxconn have been a hot button issue, but I’ve heard it said that the suicide rate among Foxconn employees is lower the Chinese national average. Yet, this doesn’t ameliorate the problem that Foxconn and other Apple suppliers still demand their employees work far longer and cheaper than tolerated in developed countries. My point though is not to pick on Apple – the same issues concern almost all electronic manufacturers and a great number of manufacturers in general. In some regards, Apple is far better than other manufacturers. But are they good enough?

Apple’s financial worth and corporate power are monumental. Their aspirational values for design are massively influential. I believe those capacities should be matched by a stronger concern for the poor and the polluted. It seems to me that Apple, perhaps more than any other corporation, is capable of properly valuing the energy and time it takes – in material and human conditions and as measured in carbon, water and life – required to make their products.

The photo set on the lock screen of the second iPhone 4 is a photo of Foxconn workers in Shenzhen, taken by by Kin Cheung/AP.

A note on the repair/replacement of iPhone screens:

After taking these photos I repaired the black iPhone 4 with the clear packing tape over the screen. Or rather, I replaced the broken screen, which is not strictly repair.

My partner had put the packing tape on to hold the screen together and prevent hurting her finger in use. Its just as well the packing tape was there, because I read only later that once all the tiny internal screws are undone and the screen comes free from the body, the screen is liable to explode little fragments of glass into the air. Eye protection is advised, and apply packing tape beforehand if its not there already.

I had previously repaired or modded Macbooks and other laptops computers, but the scale of the iPhone and its tiny, compacted components presented a challenge. It took time and required more care and precision than I expected. Each screw seemed to get smaller and smaller as I delved into the insect-like guts of the phone, testing the limits of my eyesight and hand control. Tweezers were used. I tried to not touch anything with my fingers, because little smears of skin oil can interfere with the signal antennae that conducts through the body of the device.

Care also needs to be taken in returning components to their location in the same order as they were removed, complicated by little screws, washers and rubber spacers popping out unexpectedly. I made a mistake and needed to repeat a few steps. For anyone following the iFixit instructions, I recommend reading the comments attached to each instruction before following that instruction, and re-read them on re-assembly. The instructions by themselves are not complete.

In the picture above, the open iPhone sits on the table adjacent to a sticky, colour-coded mat. The mat came with the replacement screen, along with some tools. As you remove the screws you stick them on the mat’s coloured dots, referencing their position inside the phone. Its a nice solution for keeping track of the screws.

When I was done I reflected on the task, and I wondered about the workers that assembled the phone in the first place. This phone was no doubt just one of hundreds or thousands assembled during their days and weeks of work.

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Product transparency, Corporate experiments

by guy keulemans on June 22, 2015

A few days ago Michelle N. Meyer and Christopher Chabris wrote an article in The New York Times titled “Please, Corporations, Experiment on Us.” The article raises the issue of corporations conducting experiments on their customers, users and employees – as seen last year when Facebook admitted to manipulating its data feeds to elicit emotional responses from a group of its users, in comparison to other Facebook users. The dating site Ok Cupid conducted a similar experiment on a small group of its users, manipulating its compatibility algorithm to test that algorithms usefulness. The article makes the case that while such corporate experiments were condemned, they can nonetheless be useful and should be encouraged. I find that argument problematic, perhaps even dangerous, though to be fair it not suggested that corporate experimentation should be done without ethical standards, and this is discussed more explicitly in the linked academic paper written by Meyer. However, what I think is most interesting about the article is that it has another implication, which is that ethical standards need to be asserted for a broader range of corporate activities, and specifically the production of consumer goods.

The authors set up the premise that corporate experiments like Facebook’s or Ok Cupid’s are ‘A/B’ type experiments (comparing one set of user/consumer effects ‘A’ with another set ‘B’, the control). But corporate activities, such as releasing a product or making system-wide changes to software algorithms also produce effects on user/consumers in the form of A “imposed by itself”, that is, not compared to anything properly known, quantified or assessed (i.e there is no control).

The authors don’t define that latter practice, but I’m going to call it ‘A/{ }’, where { } means an empty set, though the existing set of conditions to which it refers are not actually empty, just unknown.

The claim of the article is that because we readily accept products into the market in the form of A/{ } (and without the level of consent or ethical standard required in scientific studies), we should also accept the practice of producers manipulating a product for one group in comparison to another in the form of A/B, as a means to gain better experimental data.

I think the mistake in the article is that the significance of this is not that the first practice A/{ } legitimises the second practice A/B. Rather, A/B exposes a problem with A/{ }, and that is the problem of consent and disclosure.

In regard to this, the article notes that the ethical problem with the Ok Cupid and Facebook studies are that they did not disclose the experiments, obtain consent or provide a way for users to give consent. Users were not informed to the extent they could opt out and be in the ‘control’ group, or leave the platforms altogether.

This guides us to consider the issue of consent for A/{ } activities. Consumers and users should, in theory, have such consent because they can choose, or choose not, to buy or use a product. The problem with this consent, however, is that it is not truly informed consent, because producers do not disclose all the information about their products that consumers, arguably, need to know. There are a very many standards that already apply to consumer goods – standards of safety, for example, so that electronic products don’t shock or explode, or so chairs don’t collapse. But what is not disclosed? With increasing levels of blackboxing, consumers may not know how to access, modify or repair some products. Furthermore, there is much information about supply chains and their social or environmental relations that are not disclosed. For example, we don’t know very well how many blood metals from Congolese warzones are in our Apple phones, or how many Chinese factory workers killed themselves are a result of producing it, or how difficult and polluting the phone is to discard or recycle. Likewise, we don’t know the intricacies and effects of Facebook’s sharing algorithms on our mental health or consumer behaviour. This is because these corporations choose not to disclose it. It may be what they consider unpublished intellectual property or it may be competitive business information unappealing to customers.

Its possible that manufacturers don’t disclose some information because they don’t know it themselves, but historically there are famous cases in which very useful information was deliberately suppressed or hidden from consumers. The health risks of tobacco and high-sugar diet foods are two notable examples.

With better transparency, consumers should be better able to choose to stop smoking or reduce their sugar intake, or buy more ethically produced phones or use an alternative, less manipulative social media platform.

Transparency and consent concerns employment also. In the hypothetical example the authors give, a CEO implements an action to bolster employee savings. Its an interesting hypothetical because the action is itself the disclosure of that action (the release of information regarding the saving behaviour of their peers). This complicates consent and the capacity for an employee to opt out within the same corporation. However, if that action is fully disclosed to all employees and likewise, but different, actions are fully disclosed at another corporation, then the employee can use that information to consider the benefits of changing employers. In turn, market effects should provide the corporation with information needed to create beneficial employment practices and attract better employees. If we set the goal as not achieving just the corporation wants directly, but achieving that which helps individuals, societies and corporations together. (Further to that, it could be asked, who is making the claim that it is beneficial for employees to save more income anyway, and why? I would be suspicious of a CEO that claims a policy is for an employee’s benefit, but feels that the policy possibly shouldn’t be disclosed in order for them to benefit – even if that’s an unknown at the time of non-disclosure.)

The article argues that corporations should be encouraged to experiment more. This doesn’t necessarily imply they can do so without ethical standard, and the linked academic paper makes it clear that this is not the case, but the danger is that the article may be interpreted that way.

It makes sense to argue that it is ok for corporations or producers to conduct such A/B studies, but only if they are are subjected to well established ethical standards or for research, such as those used by universities. In the US and Australia, these are rigorous.

The subsequent and more compelling extension of that argument is, however, that ethical standards should apply to the manufacture or modification of all products – the A/{ } experiments. What I believe we should be considering is how ethical standards of transparency, disclosure and consent can apply to the design, manufacturing and marketing of products across the broader realms of production and consumption, so that consumers have a better quality of informed consent in general.

Its readily accepted that the specific health-related information and effects of tobacco and food should be disclosed to consumers at the point of sale and as packaging information. Why not the specific socio-environmental related information and effects of consumer goods?

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Cover design and internal typesetting for the English translation of Masakazu Ikeda’s Contempory Clinical Foundations of the Classics, a Japanese textbook concerned with interpreting the ancient Chinese texts on acupuncture.

Typeset in Bembo, Futura and Mincho.

The kanji on the cover is printed in PMS 874, a pinkish gold spot color that doesn’t show up too well here.

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Cover for the Deleuze Studies Journal

by guy keulemans on June 15, 2015

Last year I was invited by Andrea Eckersley, the art editor of the Deleuze Studies Journal to contribute a cover. Conventionally, this means sending an image that is slotted into a pre-designed template that makes Deleuze Studies Journal covers look consistent. In Deleuze-speak, this could be called a stratified or striated design system. But Deleuzians are often interested in those forces, whether social, political, or creative, that can break down or destabilise stratified systems. So I thought it interesting to consider how I could mess with the existing template system, short of actually redesigning it.

This cover plays with the processes of copying, repetition, transformation and distortion possible within print-ready output from vector-based graphic design software. I attempted to include elements that had the potential to be aesthetically challenging, such graphic distortions, a missing glyph character and a typo. More significantly, I included technically challenging details for the printer, such as hairlines, inconsistent overprinting, non-expanded vector graphic effects and, probably the worst, over-saturated CMYK inks for rich greys and blacks. These latter effects are prone to smudging on the press or even flooding the paper with ink to the point it warps.

I noticed a few of these features subtly changed during the proofing phases, probably due the vagaries of pre-press software and probably unnoticed by the printer. In conventional print design projects such changes can bother clients and infuriate designers. But in the end, the printer did a very good job managing my intentionally ‘bad’ design – and that suggests they may have also intentionally tweaked some of my ‘mistakes’ in the pre-press phase. The final printed cover looks good.

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JamFactory Associate Workshop: the concept of a ring

by guy keulemans on May 29, 2015

During February and March of this year, Kyoko Hashimoto and I ran a workshop for JamFactory Metal Design Studio associates. The workshop addressed the design of rings, in the context of history and contemporary needs, loosely framed by the commercial goals of JamFactory for establishing a custom ring design service.
Focus was given to the development of experimental and reflective practice, self-directed research and conceptual thinking. Through presentations, and group and individual discussions, the associates developed the design of rings that responded to their research. These rings were subsequently finished and photographed in April.

A PDF catalog of the workshop outcomes can be downloaded by clicking the first image or the following link.

Ring Workshop – JamFactory 2015 – Keulemans & Hashimoto

Angela Giuliani, Sylvia Nevistic, Davide Spinoni, Emma Field & Zoe Grigoris

with Christian Hall (creative director) & Alice Potter (production manager) of the Metal Design Studio

Photos and text by Guy Keulemans and Kyoko Hashimoto

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Proposal for a Copper and Tin Vessel

by guy keulemans on May 26, 2015

The material properties of copper, its conductivity and its effects on other metals as an alloy, make it a core technological material of history and civilisation. Copper is very active metallurgically, and found in many organic and inorganic ecologies, and even in our blood, though direct sensory experience of such copper ecologies is rare. Typically, the day to day encounter with copper is in applications that are physically small, such as copper wiring or other electronic components. The era of tinkering and tin lined copper kitchenware is almost gone – the winding down of an ancient relationship begun in the alloys of the Bronze Age.

This design combines cast pure copper and cast tin as married metals. Pure copper is a tricky, reactive metal when cast. It wants to spit and react with air, so imperfections and cavities can result. Such tendencies may be controlled in industrial practice with the use of a flux layer and other techniques, but in this proposal, as in my previous work Copper Ice Cream Scoops, the copper is imperfectly cast. The cast is then flipped and repaired with molten tin, poured in from the other side of the mould.

This materiality, in the ancient, archetypal form of a vessel, expresses the active vibrancy of copper as a metal and its historical significance when alloyed with tin.

The computer drawings are only diagrammatic. The manufacturing process is generative and each vessel is unique. The display of multiple vessels makes this feature intuitive.

These processes were developed for my previous work Copper Ice Cream Scoops (2012), in which I reproduced the classic Zeroll style aluminium scoop in copper and tin by the lost wax method. The simpler shape of these vessels makes sand casting suitable.

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Unmaking Waste, exhibition and conference

by guy keulemans on May 20, 2015

Tommorow, the exhibition Unmaking Waste will open at UniSA’s SASA Gallery in Adelaide.

On Saturday, I’ll be presenting my peer-reviewed paper “Mixed Up: Re-thinking the sensibility of reinforced concrete” at the Unmaking Waste conference. The paper concerns the problematic obsolescence of steel reinforcement used in concrete as a composite material – a ‘monstrous hybrid’, as McDonough and Braungart would say. This concept is illustrated through a discussion of my previous work Gilded Concrete Low Table. In may paper I contrast the failures and costs of many 2oth century structures, and the future obsolescence of many more, with the two millennia year old Pantheon in Rome. I draw content from Robert Courland’s excellent book Concrete Planet, but use my analysis to indicate strategies for designers to firstly understand material ecologies as active and vibrant, with all the anthropocentrism that curtails, and secondly to use ‘maintenance’ as technique drawing attention to improper material use.

For the associated Unmaking Waste exhibition, I contributed a number of works – a table, a slab, an object made from reconfigured construction site markers and a chalk wall drawing. These all address, in different ways, the problem of steel oxidation (rust) inside concrete and the resulting spalling, when the concrete is literally forced apart by the rust-driven expansion of the steel.

Details and images of my practical works below.

Exhibition launch

6pm Thursday 21 May 2015

Exhibition open

Tuesday 5 – Friday 29 May 2015

11am – 5pm Monday – Friday


Level 2, Kaurna Building,
City West Campus,
UniSA Cnr Fenn Place & Hindley Street,
08 8302 9274

Charles Anderson, Singh Intrachooto, Guy Keulemans, Mandi King, Kirsty Máté, Kerstin Thompson, John Quan, Peter Walker, Stuart Walker and Andrew Whittaker

An exhibition developed by Zero Waste SA Research Centre in conjunction with the Unmaking Waste Conference.

Photos here by Steve Wilson.

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Archaeologic, new vases, preview

by guy keulemans on May 12, 2015

Last week I had the chance to get into the photostudio at JamFactory, where I am currently resident artist, to take some photos of a new collection of Archaeologic vases.

More images are now uploaded, here.

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Belle Magazine November 2014

by guy keulemans on November 28, 2014

This month I was included in Belle Magazine’s “Generation Next” review of significant Australian designers.

I think the photographer did a pretty good job capturing my beard :D. He had a bigger one himself.

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For the last few years I have been teaching in the final year program for Bachelor of Design students at the College of Fine Arts. This program gives students the opportunity to propose and develop their own conceptual projects and I have been lucky enough to teach many talented students and supervise many excellent projects. Last year, two students stood out for the quality of their work and the relationship of their ideas to my own research in product design concerning the factors of production which express, or don’t express, within the experience of consumption.

Emily Yeung is a young fashion designer tackling a big ethical issue within the fashion industry – the exploitation of garment workers in developing countries where they are subjected to low wages and unsafe working conditions. This issue can be perplexing for designers wishing to do the right thing, but faced with that fact that Australian companies produce the vast majority of their clothing overseas, complicit in the economic forces which create the problem. There are arguments to be made that producers need to be both more aware of this situation and intervene directly to make sure that garment workers are not exploited. Yeung’s project Eight Storeys addresses the importance of raising awareness within the fashion design industry in a novel and provocative way.

Starting with her research on the Rana Plaza collapse in Bangladesh and inspired in part by my project Smash Repair, Yeung developed an exceptionally designed video and range of garments which powerfully express the tragedy of such events and at the same time makes a proposal for a local, autonomous and alternative production system which, while highly conceptual, steps away from the moral quagmire of mass-production systems. As Yeung states, this proposal addresses “the demise of local manufacturing and emphasises the need for transparency in supply chains.”

The video is well worth a look: 

Eight Storeys from Emily Yeung on Vimeo.

Yeung’s project was first exhibited at the 2013 COFA Annual Graduation Galleries and awarded the Design for Social Activism prize.

It was later awarded the Dia Gotya Nomination from the Design Institute of Australia (2014) and the Hatched Award Nomination from PICA | Perth Institute of Contemporary Arts (2014).

Lyly Lao is another Bachelor of Design graduate interested in the manufacturing conditions of products and materials – in her case, leather. Her research began with a visit to one of the few remaining tanneries in Sydney and the observation that the very complex process of tanning leather (and many chemical ingredients used, often poisonous and environmentally destructive) are almost completely hidden to the consumer within the experience of leather products, such as shoes and bags. Noting the evidence in the archaeological record that the earliest human societies had more ‘organic’ methods of tanning leather using animal waste products such as brain, blood and urine (methods still used in some places, such as the infamous tanneries of Morocco), Lao developed her own DIY techniques for cleaning and tanning pig skin she obtained from a local butcher. An interest in the properties of skin lead her the art of tattooing, which she incorporated into her final design: a self-tanned pair of Men’s shoes with tattooed logos.

Leather tanning at a Sydney tannery:

Lyly’s own process involved cleaning the fat off the pigskin she was able to obtain:

Tattoo experiments on pig skin:

Lao’s shoes are not necessarily commercially attractive (though personally I think they are beautiful) but rather the point of Lao’s project is expose the materiality of the product and draw its origins and production conditions closer to the consumption experience. Her shoes, which retain the hair and ink branding from the pig, are far more animalistic than typical leather shoes, and raise the association of pig skin to human skin, accentuated by the visual device of the tattoo. The project asks whether we should be consuming leather at all, but at the same time evidences the possibility of alternative, non-industrial leather production without the need for chemicals and processes of risk to human heath and the environment.

Lyly Lao’s project was exhibited and awarded the sustainability prize at the 2013 COFA Annual Graduation Galleries.

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Last year I was invited by Jackson Tan (BLACK) and Justin Zhuang (In Plain Words) to contribute images of my work to their Creative Cities exhibition in Taiwan. The very well designed exhibition has now opened and is running until the 12th January 2014.

In the images here you can see photos of my work amidst that of other designers from Sydney (including Trent Jansen & Henry Wilson) and designers from other Asian cities including Tokyo, Seoul, Singapore, Taiwan and Beijing.

More images can be found on the Creative Cities and Kaohsiung Design Festival links below.

Congrats to the Creative Cities team on a great effort and result.


Venue: Pier-2 Art Center, Kaohsiung City, Taiwan
Date: 13 December 2013 – 12 January 2014
Presenter: The Kaohsiung City Bureau of Cultural Affairs, Taiwan

Language: English, Chinese

Curator: Jackson Tan / BLACK
Editor: Justin Zhuang / In Plain Words
Assistant Editor: Yvonne Xu
Exhibition Design: BLACK
Information Design: Yin Shanyang / SWARM
Sound curator: Zul Mahmod

CREATIVE©ITIES on Facebook: http://facebook.com/creativecitiesproject
Kaohsiung Design Festival: http://w4.khcc.gov.tw/2013KDF

Photo credits: Caleb Ming and Kaohsiung Design Festival, 2013.

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Domestic Renewal on tour: the Jam Factory

November 11, 2013

The exhibition Domestic Renewal, featuring my Copper Ice Cream Scoops and curated by Rohan Nicol, is currently on show in Adelaide with new work contributed by designers from the Jam Factory. The catalogue can be downloaded here. Domestic Renewal at the Jam Factory 10th October 2013 to 1st December at the JamFacory Gallery, 19 Morphett […]

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Talk for Domestic Renewal at Craft Cubed

July 19, 2013

Domestic Renewal curated by Rohan Nicol is showing again at the Craft Cubed festival in Melbourne. The exhibition opens on the evening of the 1st of August and on the 2nd of August at midday I’ll be talking about my contribution with Rohan and others. Event: Domestic Renewal Venue: Craft Start: August 2, 2013 End: […]

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Matylda Krzykowski: guest talk at COFA

March 26, 2013

This Thursday the 28th of March 2013, the very talented designer/curator/journalist Matylda Krzykowski will be giving a guest talk at the College of Fine Arts, UNSW. I’ve known Matylda since my time studying and living in Holland and I’m very happy to host this presentation of her work during her brief visit to Sydney.  Her […]

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Domestic Renewal at Craft ACT

November 12, 2012

Currently my Copper Ice Cream Scoops are on display in “Domestic Renewal: A table re:set” at Canberra’s peak craft and design venue Craft ACT craft and design centre, continuing until Saturday 15 December 2012. The exhibition is curated by Rohan Nicol and features the work of Alex Asch, Richard Blackwell, Norman Cherry, Ann Cleary, Heidi Dokulil, myself, Bridie Lander, Gini Lee, Rohan […]

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Copper Ice Cream Scoops

November 2, 2012

The use of pure copper, a metal with high thermal conductivity, presents a technical improvement to Sherman L. Kelly’s famous aluminium ice cream scoop design dating from 1935. However, due to the difficulty of casting pure copper by the lost-wax method, the scoop comes out of the mould damaged and imperfect. The scoop is restored […]

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Torn Flasks, work in progress

October 19, 2012

Its been a tough year for me in regards to making objects – my phd research has taken precedence and I’ve hardly been in the workshop. This is a slowly developing work in progress, a series of ceramic flasks moulded from Erlenmeyer and various other flasks.  I’m interested in the seeming absolute nature of scientific certainties – […]

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A taxonomy of Sherman L Kelly style ice cream scoops

September 24, 2012

This project for the upcoming exhibition Domestic Renewal began with a conversation I had with designer Henry Wilson, in which we talked about these fascinating hollow aluminium ice cream scoops containing liquid in their handle. The classic design is made by the American company Zeroll, as pictured above (image from Williams-Sonoma). The aluminium, which is quite […]

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Idealism and Rationalism

July 6, 2012

Reading through Christopher Hitchens’ memoir I was struck by this quote (among many others) about idealism and rationalism, and the sometimes challenging ability to change one’s mind. To announce that one has painfully learned to think for oneself might seem an unexciting conclusion and anyway, I have only my own word for it that I […]

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Cufflinks in Oxidised Silver

May 29, 2012

Cufflinks I designed for my father’s 80th birthday in London (his initials are TK). Made from 925 silver. The whole cufflink is blackened by oxidizing the silver, and then the oxidization is removed from the face as the final finishing procedure, exposing the initials. Another pair with initials JK, for my brother. I made the […]

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A Quote from Andrea Branzi

March 27, 2012

“Today, in order to create a new architecture and new urban spaces, it is necessary to to begin further upstream: one has to plunge one’s hands into that vast planktonic soup of products, technologies, pictures, signs and data which make up the artificial universe in which man is completely immersed.  It is an invasive and compromised artificial environment, but none […]

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Archaeologic: ceramics repaired with photoluminescent pigments

October 28, 2011

This work has been superseded by the third series of Archaeologic. Above photos by Dean McCartney.

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Archaeologic, Sydney Design Week images

October 28, 2011

This stage of the Archaeologic project was exhibited during Sydney Design Week 2011 in collaboration with Henry Wilson. For other stages of this project I am using an approach adapted from kintsugi, the Japanese art of ceramic repair, embedding the photoluminescent pigment into deep glue seams running right through the bowls. For this project, Henry […]

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Archaeologic: first image

September 30, 2011

Broken white stoneware repaired with photoluminescent pigment.

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Archaeologic at Sydney Design Week

July 31, 2011

My new project with Henry Wilson is now on show during Sydney Design Week 2011. Details below. Archaeologic Seeing potential in the look and feel of broken things, Guy Keulemans and Henry Wilson present an act of protest against the new. The transformative power of repair is harnessed in a collection of objects which celebrate a synthesis of […]

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NNancy at PYD

April 7, 2011

From March 18 to April 19th my installation NNancy is on show at the PYD Building in Sydney. A spatial intervention built from a simple fixed modular component, the structure generatively becomes complex as it caterpillers its way up the central staircase. I, with a rotating group of assistants, are building the structure live on […]

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Kids Energy House at Archizoom.pl

January 4, 2011

Pawel Kraus from Poland’s Archizoom has written about my project Kids Energy House, here.

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WWILMA at the Centre of Contemporary Art in Torun

December 16, 2010

The exhibition Tag! Base! Hide and Seek! has opened successfully at the Centre of Contemporary Art in Torun, and  WWILMA has begun. This was project was difficult for me because I was unable to travel to Torun and set it up myself, but instead sent an instruction manual to the curators. That makes a fair amount of […]

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WWILMA will begin growing soon in Torun, Poland

October 29, 2010

Earlier this year I was asked to contribute to the soon to be released Platform 21 book. My contribution was a series of sketches proposing an structure built by the visitors of an exhibition which represents their demographic qualities by translation into physical structure. Its both interactive and generative, and somewhat like an infographic or diagram, but […]

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Artichoke and Belle articles

October 29, 2010

I was recently featured in the July-August issue of Artichoke, Australia’s design and architecture magazine. It was a very nice profile written by Dutch design journalist Ingeborg van Lieshout, who also writes for a number of important Dutch entities like Bright, Frame and Mediamatic, as well as for her own site The Green Light District. […]

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Superunfoldedbox write up in Art Forum

July 22, 2010

The May 2010 issue of Art Forum has a review of the Marres Centre’s We Were Exuberant and Still Had Hope. Ettore Sottsass: works from Stockholm, 1969 exhibition. The author Saskia van der Kroef writes: ….designer Guy Keulemans provided “notes” to Sottsass’s Superbox. Keuleman’s Objects for Atheists, Superunfoldedbox, 2009, comprising different kinds of cardboard posters […]

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The Identity & Para Identity of Tobi Wong

June 26, 2010

The celebrated young designer Tobias Wong died recently at the age of 35, officially by suicide. However, it appears he may have killed himself accidentally while sleep walking, a condition with which he had long been afflicted. In this post I speculate on how and why his ultimately tragic condition may have also contributed to […]

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The Grey Zone

June 17, 2010

This saturday opens Die Grauzone, an exhibition at Kaleidoskop in Neukolln, Berlin. My project Greygoo is designed specially for this exhibition. The exhibition is part of the larger art festival 48–Stunden–Neukölln.

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Fashion Clash 2010 Magazine…

June 17, 2010

I recently contributed to the magazine associated with Fashion Clash 2010 in Maastricht (June 4th to 6th), an event curated on the idea of fashion being produced by designers from fields other than fashion. Based on the photos posted online at Design.nl, and the ones posted by curator Matylda Krzykowski, the event was a mega-success. My article […]

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Greening Public Space; the uncertain future of billboards and urban screens

May 20, 2010

This evening in Breda, the Netherlands, Jose Subero, a classmate of mine from the Design Academy Eindhoven, is presenting a lecture on his innovative proposal to transform the city of Sao Paolo, by making use of its empty billboards, free from public advertising since 2007. In this article I introduce his project and discuss the […]

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Dumb Probes & Nuclear Fuel, Sinking to the Centre of the Earth, Melting Rock and Iron

March 26, 2010

In 1864 Jules Verne wrote “Journey to the Centre of the Earth”. Informed by new discoveries about the geology and the age of the earth, the novel attempted to equate levels underneath the surface of the earth with a hierarchy of older and older geologic time. Which is why the protagonists encounter Neanderthal men, and […]

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Handmade Toasters, A Pencil and a Four Eyed Genius: why products should be simple and understandable

March 3, 2010

In an “Abelard Snazz” story written by Alan Moore in 1982, Abelard Snazz, an egocentric and  immortal character with four eyes (literally), is imprisoned for eternity on the bare surface of a planet by some gods he has inadvertently offended. Until he can solve a Rubik cube. An easy task for a self-professed genius. The […]

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Manhole covers from Japan

January 31, 2010

It is my dream to one day design a manhole cover. I have no idea how that might come about, but in the meantime, I’ve taken an interest the beautiful manhole I discovered whilst living in Japan. Like many things from Japan, they are finely designed and crafted, and sometimes wonderfully humorous. I’ve discovered some […]

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Platform21, Goodbye.

January 29, 2010

About a year ago I recieved a phone call, out of the blue, from Arne Hendriks of Platform21, to talk about my SMASH REPAIR project, the second prototype of which he had seen on my website. He wanted to exhibit it, I told him it was in the bin. I asked, could I make another […]

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superunfoldedboxes…. folded.

January 25, 2010

After setting up the Sottsass exhibition in Maastricht a few weeks ago, I traveled back to London with copies of the die-cut models. At a pub in Shortditch, I passed some around and invited my friends to assemble them together. I was interested in seeing how long it might take someone unfamiliar with the design, […]

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Australian in Eindhoven – my interview on DutchDFA

January 20, 2010

My interview by Ingeborg van Lieshout from the Green Light District has been placed up on DutchDFA. Its a little long-winded, of course! but I hope you enjoy it. And thank you Ingeborg.

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chairs, guns, and gold mines. Giovanni Innella in Burkina Faso

December 20, 2009

In November this year Giovanni Innella, a former classmate of mine from the Design Academy Eindhoven, set about on a new project to travel to Burkina Faso and mediate the integration of a new high speed internet connection available to the population. The introduction on his site Googling Burkina explains the purpose, such as educating […]

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superunfoldedbox – protounfoldedboxes

November 14, 2009

This page concerns the graphic design-in-progress for my project superunfoldedbox exhibited at the Marres Centre for Contemporary Culture in Maastricht. A full description of that project and its outcomes is here. These graphics are diagrams that guide the creation of a model Ettore Sottsass Superbox. Functional elements, like fold and cut lines are presented, however […]

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SMASH REPAIR 3 – photostudio images

November 7, 2009

New images of the Smash Repair 3 table, a structure generated continuous cycles of smash and repair. The smashing is facilitated by ‘break lines’ that guide the direction of fractures around bolt holes, leaving the holes functionally intact, ready for repair. Pre-cut tiles are then bolted on to place broken sections back together, in time […]

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October 22, 2009

Earlier in the year I made a post about the Austrian/Italian designer Ettore Sottsass, and his influence on my own work. Part of the post dealt with the Superboxes, marvelous and provocative “product-sculptures” he produced in the mid-60’s. They were a reaction to what he had seen and experienced earlier in India and the United […]

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Dutch Design Week – Objects for Atheists

October 17, 2009

My furniture research project, Object for Atheists, and the furniture item it inspired, LKBP, pictured, is on exhibition at the Design Academy Eindhoven Graduation Galleries 2009, from October 17th to 25th. The research involved ethnography of online atheist groups, and historical analysis of the influence of religion on aesthetics. The resulting furniture presents an inversion […]

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SMASH REPAIR, after the last smash……

September 22, 2009

2 new pictures of the SMASH REPAIR 3 table, after the 7th smash and final repair, taken outside Martijn’s studio in Eindhoven. More images can be found here on my research site, along with a somewhat lengthy schizoanalysis, manifest as 7 conceptual interpretations, which can also be downloaded here.

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subjective interpretation + meta narratives

September 22, 2009

In my last post I wrote about the Object Without A Story by Andrea Bandoni and Joana Meroz – a glass vase critiquing the use of stories as devices through which we understand objects. Their conclusion is that interpretation of objects should not be “monopolized” by on official story but that the object should be […]

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“The Object Without A Story” by Bandoni and Meroz

September 13, 2009

The Archetypal Vase is a set of five interconnecting glass vases designed by Andrea Bandoni and Joana Meroz, born from their research project The Object Without a Story which suggests that the stereotypical text accompanying conceptual design objects is entirely systematic. The designers discovered sentence patterns and word clusters that were repetitiously used in the marketing […]

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Visual Politics and Active Imagination

September 10, 2009

Recently I have been engaged in an interesting email dialogue with curator and writor Freek Lomme about my and Martijn’s SMASH REPAIR project. Its inspired me to reflect upon my own intentions for the work, and as a designer in general – especially when prompted by Lomme to define my visual politics. My visual politics […]

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SMASH REPAIR – the first 5 smashes

August 27, 2009

SMASH_REPAIR-3 A short video compilation of the first 5 smashes of the smash repair 3 table project.

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1 = 2 chairs, new images

August 22, 2009

New images of my 1 = 2 chairs, originally posted here in January One old chair was cut apart and rebuilt into 2 chairs with the addition of one material, 6mm steel rod. This was a method of repair, but also a way to forge new a new identity for an object made anonymous by […]

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SMASH REPAIR 3 – Day 6 & 7

August 13, 2009
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SMASH REPAIR 3 – Infosheet

August 12, 2009

Its true that SMASH REPAIR is cerebral. And perhaps a bit crazy. Why break something on purpose….. and then repair it so as to break it again? So here is a link to a SMASH REPAIR infosheet that explains my concept, method and intent.

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SMASH REPAIR 3 – Day 5, more repair…

August 9, 2009

…another day of repair and the form is growing in complexity…

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DAE Masters 2009 Graduates online

August 7, 2009

My class, the Design Academy Eindhoven 2009 Masters graduate projects, are now online, where you can find some images of my furniture project, Objects for Atheists. The design is one result from my thesis research: Objects for Atheists… …this research focuses on the the influence religion has on the aesthetics of design. This begins more […]

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SMASH REPAIR 3 – Day 4, repair and smash again

July 27, 2009
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SMASH REPAIR 3 – Day 3, the second smash

July 24, 2009
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SMASH REPAIR at Platform 21 this weekend

July 24, 2009

This Friday, Saturday and Sunday (July 24th – 26th 2009) I will performing SMASH REPAIR live at the gallery Platform 21 in Amsterdam. I hope to smash the structure and repair it once per day, but we’ll see what happens…. the process is quite unpredictable. I’m excited to be working in the beautiful gallery space […]

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Master’s research has wrapped!

July 22, 2009

In June 2009 I graduated from the Design Academy Eindhoven with a Masters degree in Humanitarian Design. A description of my graduation project, pictured, can be found here. I also produced a thesis, which served as research and inspiration for my final project.  The thesis, titled Objects for Atheists, investigated the influence of religion on […]

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SMASH REPAIR 3 – Day 2, the first smash and repair

July 15, 2009

As the images show, yesterday was the first smash and repair. Crushing the structure and see it break was immensely satisfying after the long assembly work. The structure took a lot more weight than I expected, but when it fell, it began with an eerie and very soft crackling sound, like twigs breaking in the […]

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SMASH REPAIR 3 – DAY 1, assembly

July 14, 2009

Over the next few days I will be re-producing the SMASH REPAIR project for the gallery Platform 21 in Amsterdam. This version, the largest Martijn and I have designed so far, uses a system of tiles, threaded rod and nuts for the repair of its structure. Each tile, and also the base structure, shown above, […]

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Finally…. I graduate.

July 4, 2009

Finally I have graduated from the Design Academy Eindhoven, with a masters degree. My project is currently on exhibition at the school, and here I present my thesis titled “Objects for Atheists”.Thesis + Appendices, as a zip file. Thesis only, PDF.Appendices only, PDF. EDIT: If the links above are not working, please email me and […]

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Thesis – 4th draft

May 22, 2009

At the following link is a PDF of my nearly finished thesis. Missing is the third appendix and the odd reference or figure number. link expired Below, a recent sketch and a 1:10 model, photographed by the rapid prototypers as proof of production, winging its way to the Netherlands, hopefully before mid-terms on Tuesday.

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SMASH REPAIR featured on Bright.nl and DutchDFA

March 19, 2009

Following on from the success of Repair Night at Platform21 last friday, SMASH REPAIR has been featured in two online magazines: Bright Magazine (in dutch) Dutch DFA (Design, Fashion, Architecture) (in english)

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Models for Chest of Drawers

March 9, 2009

Chest of drawers, cabinets and bookshelves are suitable design opportunities for a topic dealing with atheism. The atheist worldview is very much concentrated on the accumulation of information and knowledge in order to ascertain the truth. The categorization inherent in the drawer/filing/shelving system is an analogy for this. And in this sense too, cabinets and […]

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SMASH REPAIR goes to Amsterdam, & Paper Sewing

March 8, 2009

At one point last year, frustrated with designing and especially with structure, I tore up a big sheet of paper and then proceeded to sew it back together. The process of stitching something as delicate as paper was actually quite a therapeutic experience; I attempted to make the repair as strong as possible but knew […]

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Graphic Studies, February 2009

March 6, 2009

This is a set of graphic studies I produced to visualise my thesis topic. Basically they are concerned with the representation of life and death within an atheist worldview, using visual metaphors such as space, stars, mandalas, spirals etc, which I think are understandable universally. The PDF of them all is here, above and below […]

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Ettore Sottsass: Rational | Irrational

March 6, 2009

Recently I have been reading a lot about Sottsass, some on the net, but mostly from the book Etorre Sottsass: A Critical Biography, an illustrated biography written by his third wife Barbara Radice. Generally I have found it very useful, especially when considered in the framework of my thesis topic of designing objects for atheists. […]

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Graphic Studies / Expessions in Furniture

February 26, 2009

Last weekend I designed some graphics to illustrate my topic. These graphics abstractly deal with the atheist conception of death and its inverse, life.Atheists do not beleive in god, and the majority also do not believe in the afterlife. Death is seen as the ultimate cessation of consciousness. This frames life as a temporality, its […]

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Objects for Atheist – Sketches round 1

February 21, 2009

Here are some ideas for designing metaphorical or symbolic objects for atheists and naturalists. I did this by developing an atheist persona, a personality construct, based on my research of the atheist community. These ideas are somewhat jokey, and I am quite sure a final solution will involve a more sophisticated approach, but I think […]

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What is the symbology of science?

February 11, 2009

At this stage in my research I am looking for a way to express the atheist world view in objects. One method I have considered is to apply, either directly or indirectly, some of the aesthetics used in graphic depictions of science. This is not to say that atheism is the same as science, it’s […]

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Thesis Summary – Mid Terms – Semester 2

February 10, 2009

IntroductionThroughout history, the ability of objects to survive has had little to do with function or aesthetics, but everything to do with cultural significance. The existence of objects is sustained by their importance to the cultures in which they are born and later pass through. In this regards, there are two main types of culturally […]

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Growing Pains

January 27, 2009

This family of chair models uses a kind of “genetic” system to grow and build objects. The manual system is applied to the design of larger and larger chairs, causing some construction elements to become marginalized while others refine into better developed expression. The end result is somewhat like the growth of a child into […]

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Variable Flooring Tiles – a system

January 26, 2009

These images show a diagrams for a 2-dimensional architectural tiling system. The system works with 2 tiles, a larger triangle edged primary tile, and a smaller triangle shaped filler tile. By changing the arrangement of the larger tile one can produce a very large number of tiling patterns, with the filler tile used to complete […]

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My Second Chair

January 24, 2009

The final result from the project set by Dick van Hoff, the 1 = 2 chairs. The brief was to take an old chair apart and rebuild the structure with 6mm rod. In the first chair I built a support structure replacing the legs, and in the second chair I replaced the seat and back. […]

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Drawing of Topic

December 8, 2008
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Abstract and Question revision 1st trimester finals

December 8, 2008

QuestionHow can a manipulation of scale be used to create long-lasting objects with sublime effects? AbstractIn the past, large architectural structures were possessed with a spiritual power representative of their iconic and rare status. Similarly, very small historical objects such as jewellery and miniature books held a special place of importance due to the time, […]

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Literature Review

December 8, 2008

My research thus far has drawn upon a fairly broad range of sources, and so this literature review will likewise cover a wide area. But first, let me introduce a triangle; a three pointed analogical construct that maps the boundary of my topic. The first point is Scale. The basis of my research, it is […]

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People Research Report

December 8, 2008

IntroductionMy people research has taken two forms. The first is a four part survey (found here)I sent out into the wild via Facebook. The survey dealt with the perception of scale and aesthetics in chair models, long-lasting and sacred objects and the supplementary data in 4 sections (sections 1 and 3 being related). Out of […]

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Objects and Survivability – Questions

December 4, 2008

As part of my people research, I have written up a narrative spliced with questions that I am sending to experts in the field of design history. Introduction:What is the survivability of objects? I am using this term survivability because it implies a life force extant to those objects of which we know. My main […]

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Landscaping the Sacred, Discovering the Cute

November 27, 2008

MINIATURE LANDSCAPESIt is now well on the way to the end of the trimester, and I now have designs and models to assess. Some of these I won’t discuss here, and instead show at finals, but its interesting to look ideas and experiments have worked and have not worked. To start with, I produced a […]

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A Definiton of Sacred

November 26, 2008

Notes from my meeting with Erna Beumers on the 17/11/08. During my meeting with Erna she drew attention to my continual use of the words sacred and profane in my abstract and research analysis. The simple reason is that this is because intuitively I feel they are the words that best express the kind of […]

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Large to Small: an application of an urban design theory

November 21, 2008

Fumihiko Maki Metabolist system of urban design breaks down the structure into 3 areas.compositional form – individual elements that mold and adapt to the next level of megastructure: megastructure – a larger network of forms that give unify compositional form and create shape and pattern: and group form, a system of megastructure linkages that create […]

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Architcture, Scale, Destruction, Creation and the Threat of the Blank Slate.

November 18, 2008

Some thoughts after reading Rem Koolhaas’ S,M,L,XL In the margins of Rem Koolhaas’s book S,M,L,XL, is a kind of dictionary, a collection of quotes from, I assume, various sources headlined under a single word in bold capitals. For example: “SCALE: …. working with scale puts you in a an almost god-like position…. you can hold […]

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Goldilocks and the Three Bears: Transgression of the Miniature

November 13, 2008

The story of goldilocks and the three bears is an interesting tale dealing with notions of scale and privacy. Goldilocks, usually depicted as a pretty young blonde girl, the perfect representation of innocence, discovers an empty house one morning in the woods. Inside she discovers 3 differently sized bowls of porridge (eating the smallest), 3 […]

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My First Chair

November 12, 2008

This is the interim results from a workshop I am doing with Dick van Hoff; the task is to take an old chair and rebuild the leg structure from 6mm steel rod. Unwilling to destroy a perfectly good chair, I chose an old and broken chair that was floating around the studio. With loose joins […]

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Abstract revision…..

November 3, 2008

In the past, large architectural structures were possessed with a spiritual power representative of their iconic and rare status. Similarly, very small historical objects such as jewellery and miniature books held a special place of importance due to the time, care and techniques needed to produce them. However, the contemporary era is one where the […]

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New Investigations: Antiques and Antiquities, Anomalous Objects, Human Scale in the Technological Society

November 2, 2008

Before I rewrite my abstract in response to feedback from Bas Raijmakers and the other M+H mentors, I want to quickly outline some new directions of research I discovered in the build up to the mid-terms. Antiques and Antiquities:One of the comments made at mid-terms is the use of the phrase “long-lasting” in my abstract. […]

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Midtems presentation model and graphic, photos

November 2, 2008

In addition to the graphics I presented for my research question and abstract (in the previous post), for the midterms I also presented an intuitive response to my research topic in the form of a model and a graphic. The graphic, on the right above, was a silhouette image of “Natalie”, a fictional character also […]

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midterms – question, abstract and reseach graphics.

November 2, 2008

A PDF of my midterm graphic detailing my research question, abstract and research plan can be downloaded here.

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Mid-Terms Submission

October 24, 2008

Abstract:In the past, large architectural structures were possessed with a spiritual power representative of their iconic and rare status. Similarly, very small historical objects such as jewellery and miniature books held a special place of importance due to the time, care and techniques needed to produce them. However, the contemporary era is one where the […]

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Kindergie Huis – Kid’s Energy House

October 14, 2008

Kindergie Huis (Kids Energy House) is a prototype for a doll’s house that can educate children and parents about green architecture and sustainable living. The House includes toy-like features indicating solar panels and solar hot water heating, cross-ventilation, green walls and planter boxes and, of course, an iconic wind mill, in addition to other elements. […]

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Scale: the Sacred and the Profane

October 13, 2008

THE SACRED MONOLITH In antiquity, the gigantic has been associated with the sacred. Religious monuments are large in proportion to the technics of the religious culture….. building churches, pyramids and giant Buddhas were the domain of the religious elite, designed to cow the masses with their fantastic scale. Time to can also be used as […]

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Tara Donovan

October 2, 2008

This artist applies the kind of perceptual scale I talked about in this post, very beautifully. Her art is site specific and adapted to the the locations she exhibits, building up her work in the days beforehand. In explanation of the bio-mimicry seen in her work she explains, “My work might appear ‘organic’ or ‘alive’ […]

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Mind Maps Workshop with Bas

October 1, 2008

A recent mind maps workshop was a succesful way for me to expand concepts and vision for my thesis topics. For Futurology and Design, I envisioned a scenario in which their are two actions resulting from the study of the future. One is to use the knowledge to speed up society – predicting changing market […]

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What do the super rich collect?

September 29, 2008

An article about the excesses of the super rich, and their spending and collecting habits. Among frivolous purchases such as heated marble driveways and the collection of private airplanes, the super rich crave unqiue experiences and exclusivity. They want not just what no one else can have, they want what no one else can even […]

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The Rosetta Disk

September 25, 2008

Some more information about the Rosetta Disk – I was just reading here about how 5 prototypes have been produced, each containing the book of Genesis translated into more than 1500 world languages. Produced by the company Norsam, these translations are micro-etched on a a single surface at the back needing a x750 optical microscope […]

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Aluminium Door Knob

September 24, 2008

There is something soothing and graceful about a doorknob. I find them nostalgic, reminding me of a childhood playing in the rooms of adults. They are pleasurable on an aesthetic level due to their minimal form and, on an abstract level, their formal relationship to a room, as an intrusion, is succinct. However, door knobs […]

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Thesis Topic Proposal: Design and Futurology

September 24, 2008

“The goal of forecasting is not to predict the future but to tell you what you need to know to take meaningful action in the present.” – Paul SaffoFUTUROLOGY + what questions can we ask about the future and what predictions can we make? + how can this inform predictive design? + how can this […]

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Thesis Topics: a list of ideas

September 24, 2008

Conceptual Design and Futurology, to be discussed here. The Psychology of Collecting, as introduced via slideshow on the first day of school. Design and Scale, as posted. Digital Locality, ..in a world where creators connect online and cultures form across geographic borders, how can we assess locality of culture? How does digital freedom of movement […]

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Temporary Definitions of Design: 1

September 24, 2008

September 2008 Design is about achieving beautiful and useful synthesis. Nothing is created from out of thin air, it is a product of all that came before it – the combination of influences, skills, knowledge and art into a new formulation that serves a humanitarian purpose well is the highest ideal to which design can […]

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Thesis Topic Proposal : Design and Scale

September 24, 2008

All object designers must at some point consider scale. Scale is important both internally within an object and externally to its location and surrounding architecture. Scale often exists in measurements and parameters that are based in old systems or technology, such as measurements such as the yard (distance of an old English King’s arm). Even […]

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Work Emergency Solar Clock

August 26, 2008

Recently I have designed some unusual sundials that, instead of a clock hand shadow, use shadows of words and pictures to tell the time. The process was quite fascinating and this post is a little longer than normal because I want to detail some of the issues I faced with their design. To start with; […]

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Silver Toilet Brush

April 26, 2008

I designed this silver toilet brush during my last semester enrolled in the IM Masters course at the Design Academy Eindhoven….. somewhat of an ironic reaction to that program. Its a bit jokey, like my gold and rhodium cocktail straws, but like the straws, I hope, also beautiful and complex in meaning. It was interesting […]

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..::Seducing the Bowerbird::..

April 13, 2008

Last week I finished co-designing the Seducing the Bowerbird lookbook, for jewellery designer Kyoko Hashimoto. Her new collection has been inspired by the nest-making abilities of the Australian native bowerbird, so the lookbook design features branchy lines and feather like graphics. Much fun. Kyo and I also went out into the woods around Eindhoven to […]

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March 29, 2008

The second experiment in “repair aesthetics”. This time Martijn and I used small square “bandages” and a grid layout to map and repair the damage we inflicted on our model. We also duplicated the repair with wood tiles on another model, shown above. The final aesthetic is nice, but unsuccessful in communicating its process I […]

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November 21, 2007

My research at the Design Academy is now focusing on the aesthetics of repair. To test out some ideas, I, collaboration with another masters student, Martijn Dijkhuizen , constructed this chair/table out of cardboard. We then smashed it with some large bricks (which was fun) and then carefully repaired it (which was surprisingly fun) so […]

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Stuart Walker Workshop

November 7, 2007

Here are the result of a workshop I just did here at the Design Academy with the designer and author Stuart Walker. The starting point for the workshop was to bring in old, but still working electronic goods, bought at second-hand shops or salvaged from the tip. We then had to figure out creative ways […]

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My Mid-term “Manifestio”

November 1, 2007

So I am halfway through the first semester of my masters course at the Design Academy, and for the mid-term presentation I made a manifesto, actually I call it a “Manifestio” a source book for aesthetic criteria, set of “design instructions” for myself. The introduction on the first page functions as an index, and the […]

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Plastics and Petroleum Poster

October 31, 2007

I have recently begun the Masters program at the Design Academy Eindhoven, in the Netherlands, which so far has been very interesting. My current topic of research is new plastics such as bio-plastic, self-healing polymers etc. To refresh my knowledge of plastics as a whole, I produced this large poster presenting a broad overview of […]

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“The Anatomy of F” look book

July 18, 2007

More Anatomy of F stuff – heres the look book for the new collection by Kyo Hashimoto.

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the Anatomy of F

May 3, 2007

Here is a graphic treatment I did for Kyo’s new range “The Anatomy of F”. The model is Yuka from the Trippple Nippples

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Kyo and Guy at Pecha Kucha Vol. 40 in Tokyo

May 3, 2007

Kyo Hashimoto and I presented at Pecha Kucha Vol. 40 at Superdeluxe in Tokyo last month. Lots of fun. We spoke about the jewellery range “I Blame the Uni” and also presented some new work from the both of us including the series “Anatomoy of F” and the pendant “Jelly Monster” below. This is a […]

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bezoah pendant

April 23, 2007

I had a really busy couple of months and I am afraid to say that getting real work done took precedence over blogging. But I am happy to post again for the first time since January, with some photos of a new jewellery design called Bezoah (usual spelling “bezoar” which is a type of hard […]

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Arterial sketches

January 6, 2007

mm. Haven’t posted for a while, so I just thought I would upload these drawings from my sketchbook. I think they might make ‘interesting but ugly’ jewellery. My influence was probably Chris Burns, the artist of Black Hole and El Borbah.

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I Blame the Uni – Jewellery by Kyo Hashimoto

November 12, 2006

The thing keeping me the most busy recently has been my graphics and production work for my partner, the jeweller Kyo Hashimoto. We have just released the catalogue for her new series “I Blame the Uni”. Right now we preparing purchase orders for our stockists, which include Beyond the Valley in London, and Candy in […]

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Photos of Nabe

June 19, 2006

Nabe from the Triple Nipples, a Tokyo based dance group. I took these with the camera on my mobile, a cheap camera that has a strange type of built in fuzzy compression. Yet I like the the ghostly quality that was captured. I don’t consider myself a photographer, don’t even have a proper camera, but […]

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Pixels for Carpets

April 20, 2006

A little while ago I was reading about modern carpet production using automated Jacquard Looms. I decided to make my own patterns in minimal patterns suitable for the process. Linked is short movie of 18 of these patterns. I’m not sure if the technique I used to produce these designs has a proper name, but […]

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Thesis: Generative design and software tools.

March 27, 2006

Finally got around to making a PDF of my honours thesis “Strategies for generative designers and the development and use of generative software tools.” Not really for casual reading that’s for sure, but it may be of worth a look if you are interested in generative design, evolutionary design or Rhizome Theory. The work of […]

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March 13, 2006

Just for my own interest, I’ve been creating little animations using Illustrator. The animation is essentially generative as its controlled via variables (like stroke and skew) based on a simple mathematic formula. The beginning and end frames are not though, as I consciously design them. All the frames are generated individually unlike Flash animations. This […]

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Modern Life posters 2nd look

February 19, 2006

It’s pretty obvious I was reading Chris Ware when I did these.

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Modern Life posters 1st look

February 19, 2006

To print these cheaply, I bundled them with another commerical job I was doing. For some reason I got paranoid that the printer would find the design offensive and I rang up very ready with apologies. The response was – “huh? why would I give a damm what was on the poster?”

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Stencil Girl Brooches

February 19, 2006

Co-designed and built by Kyoko Hashimoto

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The AMPED project

February 19, 2006

In 2004 I promoted a club night with Maxitone Studios at Q Bar in Sydney. It was rock based mainly, so I got this idea to create rough, raw posters and photograph them around town taped up on walls. I find it pretty funny that one or two people to whom I’ve shown this image […]

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AMPED promo continued

February 19, 2006

The AMPED project evolving.

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furniture and objects 2000 – 2003

February 19, 2006

A selection of object designs completed during my bachelor studies at the College of Fine Art. The straws above are functional cocktail drinking straws made from sterling silver, gold and rhodium – an inversion of the materials and value we usually associate with plastic drinking straws – a theme I continue to work with (see […]

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Margot and Neville Gruzman Award

February 19, 2006

In 2002 I was commissioned to design this award and promotional poster for the University of New South Wales. I should point out that the full name of the award was later changed to the Margot and Neville Gruzman Award, by Gruzman himself,  to honour his wife, but after the award had been printed. Margot, not a big […]

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February 19, 2006

An album design proposal for the band Bureaux, which eventually became Modern Life. I continued to design for them under their new name.

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uBin .02 cd cover

February 19, 2006

one of my early commercial designs (1999), the cover for uBin’s debut album “.02”. I ended up co-writing some of the songs on their next album Star Lo.

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