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Confetti Tower (2009)
Plywood, wood, steel, hardware, paint, confetti, 16’H x 4’W x 4’D

Like the modernists, I believe in the simplicity and clarity of form, the idea of form following function, and further, form implying function, as well as the minimal and true use of material, detail and geometric forms. Conversely, I relate to the postmodernist idea of combining meaning with architecture and sensitivity to the context within which a building resides. I practice the idea of communication through architecture by exploring new means of designing buildings and reintroducing color and symbolism. This architectural notion is represented in the form and materiality of my Confetti Tower project.

The simple form of the Tower is inspired by the shape of an industrial exhaust pipe. Instead of hiding it on the back of the building or on the roof, like exhaust pipes usually are, I wanted to expose it on the most prominent site, which is usually an entrance or foyer of a significant building. I was interested in transforming the existing elements of the infrastructure and creating an iconic form that is unexpected and surprising for the viewer. It is the form that carries references, metaphors and conveys presence, life and emotion to the public. With this project I pursue playfulness and explore character; as a result the structure appears human-like and ready for motion. The pose it strikes politely welcomes the visitors, and when activated, a blast of confetti engages the public in celebration.

The reason for celebration was the Graduate Degree Exhibition, which took place at the Cranbrook Art Museum, and it was the first time this project was shown to the public. The Cranbrook museum is defined by a monumental peristyle and its strong colonnade. With its square pillars, details, and colored siding, this structure referenced the existing peristyle columns. The importance of this project is placed upon the relationship of site, time, and the observer/ activator. In this way the project becomes a site-, and time-specific installation.

Photos 1,2 by Jason Vaughn
Photos 4,5 by PD Rearick