Umbrella Earth Thematic Installation by Naai-Jung Shih

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DESIGN DETAILS
DESIGN NAME:
Umbrella Earth

PRIMARY FUNCTION:
Thematic Installation

INSPIRATION:
It is possible to recycle the Earth starting from recycling umbrellas. A typical scene after a raining day or a typhoon is a street full of broken umbrellas in reversely flipped canopy or deformed ribs and stretchers resting on wet ground. Dozens of typhoon a year hit the island and destroy enormous umbrellas in one day. I would like to make the best of the broken ones by recycling them. Another inspiration comes from the image of bag opener that stores something memorable out of wastes.

UNIQUE PROPERTIES / PROJECT DESCRIPTION:
It is possible to recycle Earth starting from recycling umbrellas. A typical dilapidated scene after a raining day or a typhoon is a street full of broken umbrellas in reversely flipped canopy or deformed ribs and stretchers resting on wet ground. Dozens of typhoon a year hit the island and destroy enormous umbrellas in one day. I would like to make the best of the broken ones by recycling them. Another inspiration comes from the image of bag opener that stores something good out of wastes.

OPERATION / FLOW / INTERACTION:
People can walk around this installation to explore the tension of linear members from different angles. Some rib sets can be stretched to form a slightly different boundary. The arrangement of rib sets creates different orders around the installation. The rib assembly comes with a simple mechanism with one joint and one tie member folding in one direction only. The mechanism generates a unique configuration and moving pattern that reminds us the wind pressure while walking against it. The bag opener reminds people to make best of recycled item into resources as a way to store the future.

PROJECT DURATION AND LOCATION:
I started to make use of linear members of broken umbrellas for design pedagogy purpose a few years ago. The architectural design studio is located in Taipei. Part of the earlier collections was deconstructed for this installation. There still are several shafts and five broken ones waiting to be decomposed.

FITS BEST INTO CATEGORY:
Arts, Crafts and Ready-Made Design

PRODUCTION / REALIZATION TECHNOLOGY:
It is time-consuming to decompose umbrella and interlace all sets as a whole. To deconstruct an umbrella has to remove canopy and untie the steel wire in the notch and runner. Each umbrella has six to eight sets of rib and stretcher. Only four to six sets were in good shape. I bonded three to four pieces as a set of pose using a pin for a nostalgia gesture. Two to three sets were interconnected afterward. Another challenging issue was to find a structure to hold all the sets in place. The result was a glass stand and a recycled grid aluminum box with the size of cavity fits the shape of rib end.

SPECIFICATIONS / TECHNICAL PROPERTIES:
The larger design is 30.5 cm (W) x 23 cm (D) x 93 cm (H). The small design is 33 cm (W) x 25 cm (D) x 56 cm (H).

TAGS:
umbrella, theme installation, recycling metaphor, environmental pollution, bag opener

RESEARCH ABSTRACT:
Research shows the metal parts of umbrella can be recycled but not the canopy. How many umbrellas do we ever use in entire life? Where did those umbrellas go? Researches reveal that umbrellas are difficult to recycle because different types of materials are used and each of them has to be handled under specific category.

CHALLENGE:
The first challenge was to relate the image after a hurricane hit the ground and the subject to be recycled. It is also challenging and time-consuming to separate all parts in a proper sequence and to manage the folding and unfolding mechanism interlaced in a two-way composition. Rib and stretcher are two perfect linear components. The hinge in between creates a dynamic folding and unfolding mechanism to enable a more versatile interface The application of pin was very helpful because it offered space and tolerance for turns up to ninety degrees.

ADDED DATE:
2019-02-12 10:51:33

TEAM MEMBERS (1) :


IMAGE CREDITS:
all by myself

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CLIENT/STUDIO/BRAND DETAILS
NAME:
Naai-Jung Shih

PROFILE:
He is a professor from the Department of Architecture, National Taiwan University of Science and Technology. He instructs a number of courses like design studio, three-dimensional scan, and RP in architecture. He publishes research papers and enjoys creative design works for years.

NOMINATION DETAILS

Umbrella Earth Thematic Installation by Naai-Jung Shih is a Nominee in Arts, Crafts and Ready-Made Design Category.

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AWARD DETAILS

Umbrella Earth Thematic Installation by Naai-Jung Shih is Winner in Arts, Crafts and Ready-Made Design Category, 2018 - 2019.

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