Descriptions below are from the designers.
We cast clear acrylic in a wooden form with a strong grain and assembled the resulting pieces to create a table made of ‘transparent wood’. We reproduced the butt ends faithfully and beveled the edges like floorboards, and matched the grains ends and dimensions of the wood used for the table legs to the ‘transparent wood’ to create a unified piece. The two tables have specific and different optical effects: at first glance the black table is wood, but a closer look reveals its transparency, while the clear table is the transparent at first glance, and only later reveals its wooden form.
Today, we’re blessed with a variety of sight-protective films for window glass and smart phone screens that prevent unwelcome peeks from neighbors. Our pendant lamp uses a type of protective film that is semi-transparent when viewed directly, and transparent when viewed at an angle. We placed the light source at the center of the ring of film, creating a lampshade that might be transparent, but mutes the light emitting from its center through the layer of half-transparency regardless of the angle from which it is viewed. The light hits the film at a right angle, creating the effect of soft light spilling into the space of the room as it passes through the transparent lampshade.
A chair made with polyurethane film, a transparent film commonly used as a packing material for precision instruments and products susceptible to vibrations and shock, thanks to its high elasticity and ability to return to its original state. Looking at the chair, it seems to consist of nothing but a backrest and armrests. It wraps and supports the body like a hammock, providing a light, floating feeling for the sitter.
A picture frame created with artificial ulexite, which has the ability, similar to fiber optics, to transmit light and images without attenuating them. Artificial ulexite is not only transparent, but makes objects seen through it appear to float on its surface, as though it is depthless. We took advantage of this property of the material to ‘map’ part of the image supposedly contained inside the frame onto its surface. This creates an ambiguous boundary between image and frame, canceling out the usual ‘image-frame’ relationship and changing the way that we see images.
Textured Transparencies is open today through April 17th at Galleria Antonia Jannone at 125 Corso Garibaldi, Milan 20121 Italy.
Photos by Masayuki Hayashi.