Workstation (Werkstatt), Books, and Disks
contact paper, industrial shelving
108" x 72" x 79"
workstation "in-the-round," Werkstatt is made
entirely out of foamcore panels covered in wood-grain contact
paper which are then attached together with velcro strips. Fully
collapsible and modular, this seemingly multi-purpose, multi-directionally
approachable "work station" was developed from images
of office furniture units downloaded from the internet and then
approximated in 3-D. Consisting of nine interchangeable units,
Werkstatt is essentially a full-scale model of an office
unit that hints at various work environments, but doesn't seem
to provide an entire blueprint for the nature of work to be dealt
As a stand-in for a fictitious structure, Werkstatt presents
the feeling of ergonomic use without delivering a function. The
lightweight foamcore panels are not meant to withstand any real
human use, and the entire structure seems to at once facilitate,
and then reject the notion of usability--some of the shelving
units are closed off or face opposite directions, and what look
to be accessible cabinets are closed of and velcro'ed shut.
With open-ended function(s) suggested, and a seemingly ergonomic-yet-ultimately-prop-like
exterior, Werkstatt questions the very nature of "work"
and "use." What kind of bodies and people would use
this fictional work unit? What kinds of "work" would
be done? In the end, the unit, stripped of real use value, becomes
a Bauhaus-like sculpture, an exercise in visual formalism.
throughout the unit are what seem to be the traditional black
artists' sketchbook, but which are made of foamcore and contact
paper. Their mutated shapes (extra long, extra fat, too skinny)
punctuate the oak-grain veneer and provide visually formal elements
as well as hint at mutated function.
Adjacent to this is Books and Disks, a pile of purely foamcore
and contact paper black sketchbooks and red computer disk. Taken
as another purely formal display of line and color, it functions
as a play of jumbled Mondrian elements. As a stand-in for parrallel
forms of "media" (which essentially is what books and
disks are), the pile of (discards? frenetic research?) can be
seen as a mix-and-match of two information systems.