suckerPUNCH: Describe your project.
Norell/Rodhe (Daniel NORELL & Einar RODHE): Erratic is a recent installation at ADD that playfully draws on the tension between precise design intent and materials that behave erratically.
Outgoing and voluptuous but simultaneously shy and withdrawing, Erratic evokes immediate sensuous responses as well as slower associations that range from rock to cloud, from solid to ephemeral.
The spheroid, floating massing of the installation takes its cues from erratic blocks. Larger than furniture, but smaller than a house, Erratic measures approximately 3 x 3 x 3 meters and is situated in ADD’s double height space. Experienced from a distance, its folded white surface makes it stand out from a backdrop of taut, similarly white gallery walls, similar to how erratic blocks often differ in nature from their surrounding landscape since they have been tumbled by glacier ice. It slowly forges relations with visitors through its massive presence and enigmatic character, rather than through a prescribed use or function. Like the large mass of a rock, it shapes spaces around itself, but its inside remains inaccessible.
As visitors approach Erratic, other, more sensual qualities get into play based on its articulation and scalar relation to the body. Its irregular, meandering surface is designed as a battle of forces between a thick polyurethane sack and point constraints positioned on a rigid, inner armature. The excess material created by this move makes the surface bend and furl in an unpredictable manner, as if it was experiencing sudden bursts of noise. Small, squiggly furrows approach the scale of texture, while a few large and bulbous outcroppings are a couple of meters across. This lends the mass a sense of hierarchy and direction. Circulating around it, Erratic develops a distinct personality through a series of varying elevations and faces.
The installation is analyzed and cycled through alternate design mediums such as digital simulations, models and drawings in an accompanying exhibition. Overall, the work draws on disciplinary irreconcilabilities between intense materiality and abstraction, sensual engagement and critical distance.
sP: What or who influenced this project?
Norell/Rodhe: Erratic blocks, drawings of deep-sea nodules from HMS Challenger, and giant statuary.
sP: What were you reading/listening to/watching while developing this project?
Norell/Rodhe: Listening to: Byetone; Mount Eerie; and Skriet.
sP: Whose work is currently on your radar?
Norell/Rodhe: Adam Fure, Anne Holtrop, and Jimenez Lai.
Additional credits and links:
Project design: Norell/Rodhe
Team: Daniel Norell, Einar Rodhe, Hseng Tai Lintner, Stefan Svedberg and Axel Wolgers
Fabrication: Emballageteknik AB
Hosted by: ADD – The Aalto University Digital Design Laboratory
ADD Team: Kivi Sotamaa, Director
Supported by: Architecture in the Making
Photos: courtesy of Norell/Rodhe.