The project sought to create an object, foreign in its materiality, engineering and aesthetic…
The design has real and non-real parts. Plants where chosen that are often reproduced in plastic.
The timber used in the work comes in various stages – unprocessed (log) – machined (plank) and reconstituted (particleboard).
At first, real fish inhabited the unlikely drinking fountain / fish tank (the idea being to create a mini, tongue in cheek aquaponic system) but after cleaning the tank once (time consuming, boring and smelly), I decided to opt for a large plastic fish!
Finally, the use of materials such as milk crates as structural columns and steps, and the suspension of the platform and supporting tree log to the ceiling with truck ratchet – tie downs, forces everyone (especially architects and engineers trained to think about this stuff) to evaluate the engineering logic of the work.
All these material and physical strategies seek to enliven both the object and the viewer out of a passive architectural state – where all the thinking and experiencing has been done or familiar to the point of numbness.
D.I.Y Architecture seeks to force the viewer to reevaluate the object and ask themselves: what is it made from? Will it support my weight? Are all the parts real? and finally, is this architecture that I like?
The iconic milk crate:
Light weight, strong, stackable and easily modified, the iconic milk crate – the starting point of so much DIY stuff! Used universally as a seat in the street, a handy container – and a thousand other users; the milk crate in Australia is the object that comes closest to transcending notions of individual or corporate ownership (in the eyes of most, but perhaps not milk distributors).
The generic milk crate ‘belongs’ to a fluid zone reminiscent of the White Bicycle Plan started in the 1960s by Luud Schimmelpenninck in Amsterdam, the Netherlands. This so-called White Bicycle Plan was possibly the first large-scale community bicycle program. It provided free bicycles that were supposed to be used for one trip and then left for someone else.
|Milk crates||Collected by Sydney City street ‘entrepreneur/homeless person’ – Adam|
|Timber Pine 35 x 75mm x 15m||Existing in Studio stores|
|Plastic diffuser membrane – 0.6mm UV stable||Left over from commercial light diffuser I made for Sydney restaurant in 2007|
|Foam base for seat||Found in street 2004|
|Bed base||Found in street 2001|
|Acrylic sheet||Found in car park at rear of Australian Centre for Photography|
|Drinking bottle||Found in vacant lot|
|Timber logs||Sourced from Centennial Park Sydney|
|Plant clipping||Removed from public garden beds near Chinatown (overgrown)|
|Milk crates (collected by Adam) @ $5 / unit||70.00|
|Milk crates collected by DIY team (all salvaged milk crates will be returned when the guest room is dismantled)||0.00|
|Aluminum flat bar (3 x 10 mm) x 7||53.90|
|Yellow tongue particle flooring board 3600 x 900 x 19mm||79.80|
|Timber Pine Gauge 35 x 75mm||45.32|
|Plastic cable ties x 3 packets||78.32|
|Ratchet – tie down (load 2 tonnes) X 2||115.35|
|Galvanized plate (50 x 3 x 200mm) x 4||18.88|
|Pot plant containers||8.50|
Georgia Carins – partner
Josh – (Neighbour)
Gale – friend
Angela – flatmate
Scott – daytime co-tenant in warehouse