Kodai Iwamoto transforms plastic pipes into flower vases
Japanese designer Kodai Iwamoto uses glass-blowing techniques to remodel plastic pipes into vases, which he is showing at Milan design week.
Tokyo-based Iwamoto began his Plastic Blowing project with the desire to transform a mass-produced material into a piece of art.
He combines the "old-fashioned" manufacturing process of glass-blowing with cheap, readily available PVC pipes that are typically used in plumbing.
First, the designer warms a PVC pipe over a heater for 15 to 20 minutes, until its surface adopts a soft, rubber-like consistency.
He then places the pipe into a wooden mould and inflates it by blowing into a hose-like tube – a process similar to glass-blowing. The mould creates a unique indented pattern on the surface of each vase.
"As with glass blowing, many factors such as the shape of the mould, air-pressure and the speed of heating the pipe's surface, affect the shape of each object," said the designer.
"Even though it is a mass-produced and cheap material, I believe that the hand-making process gives each pipe a new value by transforming it into a well-made object."
Iwamoto is among a number of designers exploring the potential of mass-produced elements. Similarly, Eindhoven-based designer Lucas Muñoz recently used industrial steel ventilation pipes to create his Tubular chair.
Iwamoto's vases are on show at Ventura Future – the new Milan design week venue, which replaces the now-cancelled Ventura Lambrate.
They form part of a section called Ex-Portation, hosted in the Loft building from 17 to 22 April 2018.
Dezeen is media parter for Ventura Future and its sister venue Ventura Centrale.