Here are two of the laser cut “kits” that I am working on. The first has not yet been successful, but when hun the springyness of the cuts is something that I want to develop and use. I was hoping I would be able to get these to slot together, but I was not precise enough when drawing them out to be cut. I am hoping that I will be able to find a solution to this, as I like the idea of creating a cone like structure. I will also experiment with cutting the hinge design at an angle, to allow a wrapping effect for another kit.
The second kit is almost there, it slots together nicely but there is a slight overlap of the materials. I also feel that the little notches are too small and fiddly and will not work well in wood, so I am going to make these larger before the next cut. I will also add a fitting for the light bulb to be inserted, but I am not sure what to do with the base. This light could be created as a pendant, or with adjustments, to turned into a table light.
Materials: paper, glue, balloon, porcelain slip, invisible thread, LED lights, wiring.
The instillation created reflects the “REGLOIT” design by IKEA, one of the biggest retailers in Cardiff. I have been inspired by our need to own “stuff,” this has lead me to explore ideas of consumerism and material values through their community of spending.
The way I have displayed my work echoes the organisation of IKEA, with minimal objects displayed and others waiting, in piles and rejected, waiting to be chosen.
The context of the work is to fit into the IKEA living space that is desirable in the home. It can also be taken out of its context and put into a gallery environment as a piece of fine art.
Got to wire my lights together today. I found a way to connect the lights so that only one resistor is needed and less wiring is involved, this means that my instillation will be less “messy” and more professional. the wiring was pretty simple, I just found it a chore to keep the positive and negative parts of the LEDs separate and then the wires connected. The lights worked first time after soldering, and they now trail up to the ceiling from the lights and down into the space where the battery can be connceted.
New work. Just got these out the bisque, they went in at 1280 today. Their a lot thinner than the previous pieces in porcelain, so I am hoping i have finally made a light that works.
Sand blasting induction. Because of the thickness of the ceramic I decided to give sandblasting a go to thin out the surface. Unfortunately the ceramic is not a consistent thickness and the nature of sandblasting means that holes were created where the ceramic was thinner. This is unfortunate, but I have plans that will incorporate my thick and thin pieces.
Over the easter break I went back to basics with my paper mache. Firing my objects is a long process as they must be bisque fired before being fired at 1280, so experimentation with the materials that are lost during firing is interesting. It allows me to play with ideas and positions of my works. This is also useful because the work is fragile once fired.
The first trial of porcelain is out of the kiln, it has only been put through a combustible bisque at 1000 degrees so it is not as translucent as it potentially could be. The ultra bright LEDs do not shine through the ceramic at the moment, I am hoping this will change after the next firing. However, I like them as objects to hold. Many people have commented on the smoothness of the object and how appealing it becomes when held. They feel fragile, as if they could be broken easily yet their structure is strong and they have a weight to them. I want the final instillation piece to involve light and also be an interactive piece of work. I want the objects I am creating to look touchable and to be held by the onlooker.
My first experiments in porcelain. These forms have been inspired by the Ikea paper light itself, I have dismantled one by taking out the coiled wooden support. It still has a spherical shape, but this can be manipulated to created more interesting deflated forms. I have recreated these forms using balloons, newspaper and tissue paper.
The porcelain slip is much thicker than the earthenware I have been using previously so I have only dipped the balloons once. They were also harder to coat as the porcelain retains a memory so wants to return to a lump like state. I have more to “dip” ready for firing next week.
I have chosen to re-assess my original concept and outcome of this project. Originally I was planning to create Ikea inspired lights with a Jacob’s Market twist. Unfortunately I have become so involved in the making of the objects my connection to Jacob’s has become weak. I also think that my love of the place was overpowering my work and enticing me to continue to make reference.
My “new” concept has been there all along – it has just taken six weeks to work its way out of the abyss. So, now I am focusing on the made object, the raw material. The impurities that are inevitable are an intrinsic part of this. I am hanging a cluster or the lights with ultra bright LED’s inside to give a warm glow. The lights will also contribute to showing the thickness of the porcelain and where it is thicker. From a distance there will be a cloudy appearance to the work. As the onlooker gets closer to inspect the finer details the lights will dim and eventually switch off using a programmed arduino. This created a smooth and lifeless object. I think this will surprise the viewer. I also hope it can delight.
My reason for turning off the lights is simple. As you walk around Ikea your eye is caught by what seems to be an interesting object or piece of furniture that you believe you must have to improve your life. Upon closer inspection the shopper usually discovers the object is plain with no character, just like everything else the shop has to offer. This is because of the mass marketing industry that has become a part of so many of our lives.