Architecture, Interior Architecture, Designed Objects and Fashion Graduate Show 2012

June 9 through July 21, 2012
Sullivan Galleries
33 S. State St., 7th Floor
Chicago, IL

Free and open to the public
Tue-Sat, 11am - 6pm

Opening Reception
June 11, 6-8 pm

Tele Vision Network Programming Preview
by Maura Lucking and Morgan Walsh

Office Fling
Sometimes love is in the next cubicle. Take a chance on office romance…your boss will be none the wiser.

After a few lidded looks at the water cooler and flurry of flirty emails these two are ready to take it to the next level. Thankfully the Office Fling is nearby. This worktable can be hastily cleared for adult play and then speedily reassembled with a tug of silk ribbons, blending the absurdist with the suggestive. The exciting and playful office is not, as it turns out, dependent upon sophisticated equipment or happy hours but rather the ordinary office cubicle, ripe with the potential for a spontaneous encounter.

A Continuing Reconstruction of Experience
Women in blue-striped pinafores bustle up the crowded street towards a red brick mansion. Talking and laughing in multiple languages, they are an animated group despite the late afternoon hour. It is 1889 on the West Side of Chicago, and this cast of hardworking seamstresses and suffragettes are the current residents of The Hull House.

As the Hull House closes its doors after more than a century of social reform and service to the women of Chicago, a new form of memorial has sprung up in honor of the members of the needle trades that constitute the center’s primary residents. A flax and indigo garden is planted inside the gallery space as a familiar, yet constantly evolving, reminder of the materials that restricted but also enabled the livelihood of generations of Chicagoans.

When governments fall and cities crumble, who remains to pick up the pieces? Protesters, environmentalists and designers come together to imagine a future with high stakes, and even higher drama.

Ripped from today’s headlines, Ad Hoc Catharsis imagines futures for war-torn structures without returning to their pre-trauma programs; Unsolicited Architectures and Tools for Protesters provide activists with objects for stability and community-building and physical infrastructures for gathering and mobilization. Surface to Air leaves the existing cityscape entirely in a self-stabilizing, aerial structure that needs only to be moored at a convenient location to develop its own anthropological and infrastructural systems, blurring the line between aviation and settlement as society looks beyond its earthbound existence.

This is the true story of sixteen designers, picked to live in a factory, work together, and have their lives taped. Find out what happens when people stop being polite and start getting real.

It was not in just any factory, but Rossana Orlandi’s famed Milanese showroom, that SAIC’s emerging designers first presented the Whatnot collection, later shown at New York’s International Contemporary Furniture Fair. Whatnot, so-named for the collection’s affordable, “fit it in your suitcase” ethos as well as the eponymous Victorian English drawing room shelf to showcase valued collections, will be a recurring SAIC line at the Salone in coming years. Kaleidoscopic umbrellas, traffic cone trellises, fragrant wood-milled pencils and pressed-paper trophies are just a few of the objects on view in Tele Vision.  

Too Good To Be True
2012. Years out from the economic collapse and the burst of the housing bubble, things are supposed to be better. But jobs are still hard to find and it’s getting tough to pay the those mortgage bills…

Though we are not the things we own, objects become visual and physical placeholders for ourselves. Homes, despite their large scale, are the most intimate of man-made objects. They provide shelter for our emotions in addition to our belongings and ourselves. But their importance in our lives comes at a cost—homes are expensive, and many can no longer afford what they once could. When the house that used to welcome now causes worry, what do we do, where do we go and who do we become; has the American dream become Too Good To Be True?

Move over Martha, you’re about to host one memorable dinner party! Give leftovers a new life and find out why doing the dishes just got that much easier.

Recipes abound online for delicious dishes and Pinterest is perfect for DIY table settings—bring on the guests! But what about all those leftovers? These colorful containers bake alongside dinner and their size allows for only a lunch-worth of leftovers. Made from the feast’s excess food scraps, you might even find yourself adjusting the menu to get just the right hue. More than simply a clever way to send extras home with guests, Mimic allows the user to relive the celebratory experience and perhaps muddle over why merriment and excess often go hand-in-hand.

The Things We See
Trash stinks, fresh-cut flowers smell great. But what happens when you lean in to sniff the roses and get a whiff of ... fresh-baked bread? Through playful experimentation, The Things We See brings a greater awareness to this often-underutilized sense.

This science-lab reminiscent project explores the complex relationship between sight and smell. Materials are infused with unexpected odors in order to both subvert expectations and, perhaps, bring personal emotional experience and the olfactory closer together. Wedding rings aren’t typically thought of as odorous, but their iconic imagery calls to mind marriage, love and, likely, a special someone. Do these symbols need to be visual? Could a wedding ring smell like your partner, or the beach on your wedding day? Open your eyes and inhale—and engage your senses in unexpected ways.

Restorative Environments, Returning Combat Veterans, and PTSD
Gunshots ring out—or did a car backfire? A shadowy figure darts out of sight—or is a father chasing his son in the park? Danger lurks all around—or is the return to civilian life not exactly the happy homecoming it ought to be?

As war-torn veterans return from combat, adjustment and change doesn’t come easy. Crying babies and a trip to the convenience store can push soldiers to the edge. But at this recovery center, lofted bedrooms for restless nights, intimate spaces for family and individual counseling, and one very large living room help take the edge off. Housed in the south side of Chicago with eastward views to the lake, this open plan, wood and glass structure becomes a framework for healing. Though family and friends mean well, sometimes architecture offers the support and shelter they cannot, securing for itself a starring role.

In the not too distant future, objects look not unlike our own. But what if they talked back? Without verbal communication of any kind, touch becomes its own language—a new world of relationships between the human and the inanimate.

A series of objects, collectively comprising TOUCH, reveal their function through the deliberate display of material wear.  Eschewing aesthetic complexity, the simple wooden forms both communicate the embedded affordances from their designer but also begin a new dialogue  with their user as they quickly evolve through daily interaction. Burnished metal, grooved wood, and other familiar surfaces suddenly make visible the hidden relationships we’ve been in all along.