Final assignment – Fungus shelves

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Inspired by the shapes of tree-growing shelf fungi I set out to do my own ones in concrete to use as ordinary shelves. Fungus-looking shapes were drawn on MDF boards and glued 90 degrees to each other, adding a stretchy t-shirt fabric to make up the front side. The fluid mix from assignment 4 was used, including the plasticizer to be able to have some working time before it would harden.

Two casting rounds were made, the first one with two smaller 15 cm wide prototypes. Plastic and fabric was tried for the front side, with fabric turning out as the winner with its more smooth look.

For the second round 3 shelves were made, one smaller 20cm wide variant with simple round edges and two considerably larger around 35-45 cm wide with wobbly edges.

The second round didn’t quite turn out as I wanted it to. The fabric I was using wasn’t strong enough for the massive amount of concrete and I had a hard time controlling the shape. I also failed filling the molds up with enough concrete to fill up all of the shape, as I realized when the concrete was already hardening. Also, the sheer weight of such big concrete objects would make them quite unsuitable for hanging on a wall.

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A smaller sized mold with a stronger fabric stretched to its very limits would have made it easier and more stable to work with and easier to fill to the brim.

In the end I am most satisfied with my small shelf from the first round, and the cloudy white molds themselves were really the most beautiful things I have produced in this course.

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/Jakob Lif

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