All man-made objects are created in an ongoing aim for their added value. Valuation determines how important something is, whether or not it could benefit our lifes and if it should be kept or preserved. In traditional product design, ‘use and practicality’ is one of the most recognized and accepted points for proving an object’s value, but it has been proven time and time again. Therefore, newly made objects need to integrate other meanings and perspectives. For this project, multiple values have been incorporated into a series of furniture, striving to be valued for more than their function alone.
Looking at visual media from popular culture, ‘worth’ is mostly portrayed by shapes and colours that are highly recognised for their high value. This trope provides the spectator with the recognition and understanding of an object’s importance. Gold is the best example of a material that is used to make something look more valuable. Throughout history, this decorative material has been used to make things more seductive and captivating. Combined with the concept of money, a golden coin is the perfect synoptic of wealth.
Through this analogy, a currency that is made out of gold can be perceived as valuable. This idea was used to develop a technique that made it possible to create objects out of gold looking coins. The coins in these objects are stacked randomly, making every piece unique and appear as if they have been made quickly (like they say: time is money). Due to this modular production method, there is enough room for alternative shapes and other applicable techniques. Bronze was chosen as the main material for this project because of its colour and brilliance when polished.
Because of their strong visual image, the purpose of these objects shifts from practicality to that of attention and conversation. Also, corresponding to the concept of money, an object's exchange value is calculated by the amount of coins and used materials. This allows the designer to take the role as a conceptual currency exchange office: ‘actual’ money is being traded with an amount of coins that is needed to build the object.
The Price of Value (2020)
Bronze, brass, steel, walnut, glass, mirror, felt, LEDs and wiring
Shelving unit 60 x 40 x 129 cm
Lamp 31 x 27 x 119 cm
Table 50 x 50 x 51 cm
Mirror 40 x 26 x 58 cm
Each piece limited to 5, made to order