Construct-Deconstruct-Construct

This collection of furniture is based on found objects from the streets of Mumbai, that are made from scavenged pieces of wood — which have been put together in an adhoc manner. These naive objects, which don’t follow the principles of design, are on the margins on functionality. There is a ‘typical’ aesthetic that comes out of this ‘do first think later’ action, which is related to the idea of improvisation, where time and material are scarce, as survival is at stake. Each of them are totally unique, especially due to the fact that they are created spontaneously by "non-designers" not looking to create a design intervention, but for the basic and often overlooked act (by designers) of just being able to sit.

These vernacular pieces of furniture are gestural in nature — which is also imparted to the posture of the sitter due to the structure of the object. They induce behaviours and gestures (such a rocking and sitting sideways), which has been taken forward to create new gestures. One example of my intervention is a stool which forces the user to put one of their feet up, in a gesture that is a common site in India — that of an auto rickshaw driver using his left foot to push a non-powered cart (see image at bottom).

The title of this work, Construct/Deconstruct/Construct refers to the cycle of reusing materials from previously functional furniture to construct new pieces of furniture, which eventually are deconstructed or even reconstructed, to make new pieces. Metaphorically it addresses the notion of the process of the design intervention: observation/collection of objects, deconstructing those objects, and then making the design intervention

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This artwork was conceived and exhibited at the following venues: Studio X, Mumbai (February 2016); at Hotel Hotel, Canberra (June 2017) and at the Australian Design Centre, Sydney (April–May 2018) and at the Verve

One core principal of the Chor Bazaar is the ad-libbed nature of making, where time spent agonising over a design decision is income lost. The short period of time allocated to the designers
(3 weeks) and the ad-hock making methods adopted by bazaar workers meant that design decisions were made quickly. The designers made decision in the moment, as the maker with whom they worked gave shape to those decisions with an immediacy that is seldom experienced in the Australian context. The complete novelty of these work practices, combined with the exotic material palette found in the Chor Bazaar, forced the designers to adopt an entirely new method of designing, changing their practices and providing the potential for a series of outcomes that are unique within their portfolios. The sculptural furniture objects created in Mumbai's Chor Bazaar and Studio X formed the Porosity Kabari Exhibition. This exhibition was presented by Mumbai's Studio X in February 2016.

Photo Credits: first photograph by Neville Sukhia; Last three photographs by Boaz Nothman remaining photographs by Ishan Khosla.