by London Design Festival
Since last year we have been collaborating with Perrier-Jouët on a series of different projects. It started with 'ephemerā', a collection of interactive furniture pieces and continues with a series of designs for the brand entitled 'small discoveries'. In the beginning of this year they approached us asking if we would like to also design an installation to be shown at the V&A during the London Design Festival and of course we were very happy to do so. So we started to design the 'Curiosity Cloud' project.
We are very fascinated how nature works as a very clever system. Everything is connected and has an effect on each other. There is a lot we can learn from. In addition, nature obviously has a lot of beauty to offer and a lot of shapes and colours that are just inspiring. Most of the time when we go for walks in nature there is something that inspires us.
The research was done very practically by collecting data. The selection however was done very intuitively by sizes, colours, wings and whether the insects have a heavy body (like cicadas and other bugs or are lightweight like butterflies and moth). There are not so many records of extinct species and the same applies especially for newly discovered ones – so in this section the decisions were quite easy since we just had to choose from a small pool of insects. For the very common ones on the other hand – we wanted to make sure that people can relate to them or recognise them (like the ladybug, the dragonfly and the common brimstone) and that altogether we have insects from the whole world. That brings the fantasy back into the project – the species would never be in one room at the same time...unless maybe in a natural history museum.
4. How many people does it take to make a project of this scale and complexity come together?
This is quite hard to answer. Here in the studio we were on average four people and with the programmer five. In the studio we mainly planned and designed everything, made the insects and finally assembled all the endless pieces. However beforehand many pieces in the installation were produced by specialised companies – for example all the custom-made, mouth-blown glass-bulbs came from Lobmeyr, the metal-caps were made in a local workshop here in Vienna, the insects' wings were laser-cut, the wooden display-cases were made by a local carpenter and so on. So there were more people involved than just us and therefore it is hard to estimate how many people it really needs.