Developed during Creators-in-Lab residency, Asia Culture Center, Gwangju, South Korea
“Made to Malfunction”
Salvaged Technology, Aluminium, Acrylic
“Made to Malfunction” refers to the concept of planned obsolescence, a feature of all consumer products. They are designed to have a limited lifespan, then fail, forcing consumers to replace or ‘upgrade’. In my work I am interested in energies and systems that have some unpredictable element, such as natural forces and malfunctioning devices — non-regular, non- musical rhythms. I have created a collection of sound making devices from parts of discarded electronic products. Each device is presented in its own display case, to be (re-)considered an object of great value or interest.
“Made to Malfunction” was created with full support from the Creators-in-Lab residency 2018 with Asia Culture Center, Gwangju, South Korea
Asia Culture Center, Gwangju, South Korea, 14th-23rd December 2018
Openarts Space MERGE?, Busan, South Korea, 12th-21st February 2019
In Vitrø, LOXOSConcept, Matera, Italy, 4th-29th September 2019
Electric Spring Festival, University of Huddersfield, UK, 19th-23rd February 2020
"Made to Malfunction" is relevant to the theme subversive design as it repurposes technology that has been deemed worthless and disposable. Taking the motors and mechanisms from discarded products and presenting them as artworks adds new value to them, making them collectible and desirable.
They have a new 'use', and they continue to function. However the action is random and unpredictable, and makes sound and light. The device is not being used for the function it was designed for. And seems to not be working as it should, but this is intentional.
The project questions planned obsolescence and challenges the idea of the perfectly working product, functioning without glitch or fault. In art new ideas and developments often come from challenging what works and building on errors or mistakes.