In April we had a lecture from Ayumi Higuchi. The lecture was about her essay in which she investigates the impact rules have or can have on the process of cause and effect in the creative process.
To give us a visual example how the rules work, Ayumi let us make trees out of duct-tape.
Although it was not the goal of the workshop, it was really nice to see how quickly you could make a beautifull installation with tape. This inspired me to search more about tape and the artist who work with it.
Duct-tape was developed during World War II in 1942. It’s a water resistant sealing tape with a standard width of 48 mm. It was used to repair military equipment quickly, including jeeps, firearms and aircrafts, because of it’s strength and it’s water resistand quality.
The original name is duct-tape but the soldiers in World War II changed it into duck-tape because the word duct-tape was to simular to the name for the cotton fabric they used for tents and rain clothing.
After the war soldiers returned home and took the duct-tape with them, to use it around the house. Since then it serves all kinds of perpuses. In the 1970′s duct-tape even made it’s introduction into spaceflights. When the square carbon dioxide filters from Apollo 13 failed, they used duct-tape to fix it.
This saved the lives of the three astrounauts on board.
Over the years duct-tape became a very popular product. People are making items out of duct-tape or decorate objects with it. You even have a lot of websites with information about how to make stuff out of duct-tape, and movies on youtube with instructions how to make it. Like this movie, that shows how to make youre one wallet out of duct-tape.
Increased interest in creating these novelty and fashion pieces has given rise to designer duct-tape handbags, wallets, belts etc.
Not only designers are interested in duct-tape. Also a lot of artist use it.
Click here for more of these installations.
Also a lot of graphic designers use duct-tape. Within typography it even got a new name: Tapography. (also used for typography made out ofcasette tapes )
Artist Aaksh Nihilani is one of the artist who works a lot with tape. For the Arario Gallery in New-York he made three installations with duct-tape.
His explanation about the works:
“Since the show was titled Paraphrase, I took the opportunity to get into some tekst, tapography. I did ubiquitous words that we all encounter in our daily travels, especially as a New Yorker, but I wanted my paraphrase of the words to be aesthetically ‘better ‘than their original. So the words pull, push, and exit are all written out in tape, as well as simultaneously being shown acted out, or about to be (as in the exit piece). They were all a little bigger then human scale so as to more objectify their viewer rather than the usual other way around. I think these installations were particularly succesful because they stayed true to the site specific nature of the wordk that got me the show in the first place (i.e. Using the gallery’s door hinge to complete some of my lines), but also took on new levels of content in the figuration of the letters, and new concepts/processes of using the tape to express qualities like peeling and falling”
An other example of a tapografic experiment is tapewriter bu Autobahn. It is developed during a seminar by Richard van der Laken and Eric Wie, and later developed until a type specimin.
Tapewriter is a typeface that gets it’s form from the fence of a soccer-cage. The width of a role duct-tape is exactly the same as the room between two bars of the fences from thes cages. The thought behind this font is that any one who ones a role of ducttape can share their thoughts with the rest of the world.
Tapewriter showes that you can write with anything and that any surface can become your paper.
More information and the total typefase you can find on the website of autobahn.
Experiments with Duct-tape
Inspired by this all I started to experiment with duct-tape myself. My first experiment was just to write something on the wall with tape.
After that I wanted to create a 3-d effect into space, wich I achieved to tape tekst to my window an fotograph it with the outside landscape:
In my last experiment I really wanted to go 3-d. So I made lines with yellow tape in the air and made letters with black tape in it. It creates
a very interesting effect because it looks different from each side. As you can see on the picture below and the title picture.