The objects were created in response to this year’s Designers in Residence showcase at London's Design Museum, which challenged four designers to develop a project in response to the theme of identity.
Furman told Dezeen that his response was to create artefacts about the life of a fictional designer. The final ornaments intend to capture the imaginary character’s need for belonging and their fascination for new media and digital fabrication technologies.
"I believe very strongly in the power of character and scenario to tell complex truths about our contemporary state,” said Furman.
The objects were created using a number of production methods including 3D printing laser-sintered nylon in bright colours, 3D-printing ceramics and spray painting.
"I'd always felt that identity was such a protean, gaseous, changeable thing," the designer said. "It terrified me really. I mean, how inconstant we are, how fluid our identities are and how we change from year to year."
For the project, Furman also produced a film that he said "compresses all the visual influences and theoretical explorations embedded in the project, in a non-didactic and fun way." Watch it here:
Here's a short movie about the designer, produced by Alice Masters for the Design Museum:
The Designers in Residence 2013 exhibition opened last week and runs until 12 January 2014. Last year's Designers in Residence included Oscar Medley Whitfield, Harry Trimble, Uri Suzuki and Lawrence Lek.
Photographs are by Luke Hayes.
Here's a press release from the Design Museum:
Designers in Residence 2013
4 Sept 2013 – 12 Jan 2014
Adam Nathaniel Furman
This year’s Designers in Residence were invited by the Museum to respond to the theme of Identity, to explore how design can be used to convey, create or reflect a sense of identity through an object or experience.
Glued to his laptop, locked in his flat, emailing, DM’ing, posting, stressing and Skyping, what sort of a collection could a characterful designer produce in 3 months?
Furman’s project explores the potential of now ubiquitous rapid fabrication techniques to free designers from commercial exigencies, and to instead prodigiously create any number of objects whose delineations are guided by and embody intensely personal narratives. The role of collector and designer collapse into one.
Through a blog he created a character, a fictional tool, who existed for three months in a fever of rumination and production. Each post was a lived scenario which brought together a wider issue such as generalised anxiety or Facebook envy, with a fabrication technique such as 3d printed ceramic, or plaster, or plastic. The character fused these into a dizzying array of designs, each contributing to a collection which tells the story of a search for identity told through the design of objects. A journey which, thanks to technology, any one of us could embark upon in the near future.
Furman terminated the character, and the tripartite display of his project consists of a table on which all the various objects are collected, a miniature museum of the said designer, as well as the blog through which the stories behind each of the objects is relayed, and a film which compresses and conveys in a non-didactic manner, all the various influences and themes embedded in the overall project.
Adam Nathaniel Furman is a writer, designer, teacher and artist. He graduated from the Architectural Association in 2009 and is currently working at Ron Arad Associates. He also co-directs the Saturated Space Research cluster at the AA, and is co-director of the Architecture design practice Madam Studio.
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