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"body" Tag


From death to Life with Baas


Wednesday, February 21, 2018

I found « Clay furniture » by Maarten Baas really interesting as a design object.

Clay furniture chairs and table

First of all, I noticed the colors. Afterwards, the shapes.

My first impression of the piece was that it was more similar to a three dimensional drawing than to an object in space. It has very clear lines and really simple shapes. I like this work because, more than just being a practical, usable furniture, its unusual nature made it seem more like a work of art. Even if this artist is first of all a designer.

Maarten Baas tried to build (handmade) objects that remind of a part of the human body, I saw that when a man sits on a chair he becomes one with this chair. He was inspired by the human body to give a unique shape to his furniture. In this way they become like extended molds of the human body.

These chairs are not so different from classic ones (which the generic shape we would expect from a chair), although his purpose was not to recreate the classic chair.  He designs it spontaneously made of industrial clay.

 

Clay 3 furniture

 

The colors used aimed to give life to these objects. Maarten Baas changed the nature of a stool and a chair. It’s not just a chair or a table, but something we are going to live with.

 Quite ironically, Baas has tried to bring life by torturing.

SMOKE

Going from decomposing a ready made to creating an artwork in its whole, with his graduation project called « Smoke » at the Design Academy, metamorphosis remains the link to his works.

First he buys ready made furniture, which he destroys to create his own. From life, he uses death to give birth. Cutting, mutilating, burning, he ends with the suffocation of the object by applying varnish, letting the object remain what it has become.

 

maarten-baas-smoke

 

This graduation collection had real success when it was presented in a personal show in 2004 at the Moss gallery in New York, two years after his graduation in Eindhoven.

How successful, he continue his collection by showing it in an exhibition called « Where There’s Smoke… » where he had the defiance to present burning classics designed chairs like the one by Rietveld, Gaudi, Sottsass and others.

 

Baas Rietveld SmokeBaas Rietveld Smoke in fire

 

Uncertain, colorful shapes, simple and childish, Baas tenderizes us with his Clay furniture. The proximity with the human body surely does give us a sympathetic effect.

By using clay as his material of choice to create his furniture, it seemed to me that the designer was expressing fragility. The shapes that the clay creates (not straight or parallel lines), adds to this idea of being fragile. Again, I think this refers back to the human body and its own fragility (bones can brake).

I got the impression that the legs were almost moving. It isn’t a very solid shape, not fixed to the floor. It’s a very fluid shape.

small table clay

 

 

Torned feet, broken back, Baas plays with this uneven symmetry to destabilise us. Will they dare to?

Although seemingly nurturing with this simplistic and joyful harmony, I wonder if these works really are as sympathetic as they may let you believe. With these harsh, cold materials, what would our bum think when sitting on a chair made of clay with a metal carcass interior? Wouldn’t the fragility of our bones be going through hard times?

Fragility of the human body, fragility of clay. Have we ever wondered if a chair would be fighting our weight? Alike human legs, the chair’s feet seem uncertain. Homemade, this furniture takes a more artistic dimension than that of the classic ones. With these fine drawn lines, as I said above, the air runs through and gives to this chair, this table or this cupboard a lightness that reminds that of a three dimensional poetry. The softness of the paint recovered of varnish gives more comfort to the mind than to the body ; however aren’t they both as important?

This furniture becomes a real nice company. A touching fragility, friendly presence, comforting colors, amusing shapes, childish naivety.

 

fan clay

 

Baas works in harmony with space, and finds a way to link his works.

Starting with very gloomy, dusty works, darkness reigns over his graduation work.

Baas has produced a real contrast between his two works « Smoke » and « Clay Furniture ».

A real meltdown of materials, processing and concepts, Baas presents us two projects which have similar use but are visually opposite.

 

WHERE DID YOU HIDE THE GUN?


Wednesday, February 24, 2016

text by Celina Yavelow

 

Guilty_Screen Shot

She changes this thing in the house to annoy the other, and the other is annoyed and changes it back, and she changes this other thing in the house to annoy the other, and the other is annoyed and changes it back, and then she tells all this the way it happens to some others and they think it is funny, but the other hears it and does not think it is funny, but can’t change it back.

The Other, by Lydia Davis

 

Loaded Language

 

The fact that language can change a state being is pretty much wow to me. Say the word and there’s a chance something will change: your insides start hurting (“Cunt”), you’re suddenly single again (“I’m breaking up with you”), or forced into a guilty state (“You’re under arrest”). The load in this kind of language is taken literally here, considering the body not only as the agent for speech, but also as physically subject to the force and effect of loaded language — realizing you can actually do things with words, and realizing also, that its authority can be both threatening and empowering.

Complex_Screen Shot

This thesis is titled Where did you hide the gun? because it’s a famous example of a question deliberately loaded by its formulation. It does not ask if there is a gun, but ensues there is, and where did you hide it? According to the question you’re already guilty of the shot — regardless (“POW POW!”). I’ve connected this mechanism to a term in language philosophy and theater studies called performative speech utterance, which is quite a tough shoe to chew, so my theoretical framing is constantly interrupted by metaphoric associations and a fictional narrative, offering a melodramatic illustration of the concepts employed.

And_Screen Shot

Meanwhile, I became completely hooked to the thought that language can be so directive, that we are so easily affected, seduced or tricked by it. I continued my research in a sound piece called Hi, Mary, which was set out to be a subjective audio tour of a small part of the GRA graduation show of 2015, but was mostly exploring this reflex in our body to surrender to a voice and its language. Listen to it here!
Sound file: Hi-Mary

[audio:http://designblog.rietveldacademie.nl/wp-content/uploads/2016/01/Hi-Mary_Celina-Yavelow.mp3|titles=perfect fifth]

650-Celina_Yavelow_LS_05_low_res audiotour at Rietveld graduation show

 

the thesis
The subject –loaded language– is in itself interesting. But what makes the thesis original and engaging is the way in which she approaches the subject - a mix of various types of material (film, language philosophy, literature, current events, memories) and registers (short story, academic prose, interview, collaged/found text), all capably, impressively intertwined. Yavelow presents the reader with both basic and not-so-basic linguistic concepts, each of which she proceeds to explore through various perspectives.
The writing process is thus integral to the subject matter. The bluntness of certain images (for example guns) and juxtapositions (for example romance with guilt) is largely offset by the assured writing style. A range of literary devices are used to good effect: repetition, sentence fragments, double meanings, omission of conjunctions. An enjoyable, kaleidoscopic read.
[text by Louis Luthï]

Screen shot 2016-05-15 at 3.23.50 PM download this thesis by Celina Yavelow

 

What’s In A Name: a Project for Gray Magazine


Saturday, April 18, 2009

On request of Gray Magazine #5 (yearly published on the occasion of Rietveld’s final exams show) 40 students of the Foundation Year, guided by Henk Groenendijk and Tine Melzer, unleashed a two day project to create a new context for a highly varied 20.000 slide images archive. André Klein, now chair of Fine Arts and Sandberg Applied Art Dept, compiled these slides over his 25 year long career of art history teaching.

We could only guess after the motives and meanings that bound these images together in a dynamic process of ever changing contexts and wonder what new context of relation they would have in the eyes and minds of the basicyear students. The uninhibited existence of a ‘democratically’ selected 1000 reproductions, registrations and images was given new meaning through a process of retagging with subjective keywords. In the 2 day process new contexts and connections were created, processes where discovered, and results presented in a physical display of image related tag-lists and monumental alphabetical (key)word lists. I am a kid
I burn
ice
ice cube
iceberg
ice cream
Iceland
ideal
IKEA
ill
illusion
Illustration
image
imagination
immigration
imitate
imitation
immaterial
impale
imperfection
impossible
impression
in scene
incest
inconvenient
increasing
identical
India
India
Indian
industrial
industry
infinity
influence
information
ink
inner space
innocence
inquiry
insane
insect
insecure
inside
insides
installation
institute
instruction
instruments
integrate
intellectual
intense
interaction
intercourse
interest
interference
intergalactic
interior
intertwine
intimacy
intruder
invasion
invention
invisible
invitation
irresponsible
island
isolation
it
Italy
itch

Awareness surfaced about the relation between content and image and word and form and content in the contexts of our own terms. Tagging images uncovered these relations

some of the question we asked ourselves were:

The mechanisms of images and imagination on one side and the mechanisms of names and naming on the other – where do they both meet?
What is the link between what we see and how we call it?
What is the process of agreement with the other(s) to find relevant and appropriate names?
Is tagging also a kind of ‘baptizing’? Or rather an act of memory and memorizing, how things are called?
What is the level of interpretation when we have to give an image a tag?
What is the relationship between tag and image, word and view?

:
  download Gray Magazine # 5 [this is a 44 MB document] :
For more information on this and other lecture projects based on the same archive, read Gray Magazine #5. Get your own hard copy from the Library

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Adapt your body


Thursday, January 22, 2009

Usually your body decides what kind of clothes you will wear, but what if it would be the opposite way – that the clothes would form your body? If a woman without curves would wear a dress made for a curvy female, there would be empty spaces between the body and the dress. What Anniek Mol thought of, was to design an insert to, in this case, fill the holes with. The idea is to be able to adapt your body to the clothes you are wearing. In addition to that it would change the way you look, you would also move and feel differently. This all started from Annieks uncomfort concerning her body, the question is though – would there not be a greater uncomfort with her design? Or is it after all the same principle like the push-up bra?

Link: Nagi Noda


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