Dear Disaster was Jenny’s graduation project from the Lund School of Industrial Design in Sweden. Inspired by recent global events, she says: “While natural disasters are perceived as terrible occurrences, natural forces can also be viewed as awe-inspiring and magnificent.”
The aim of the project was to facilitate a process of recovery after natural disasters, to help the user regain their trust in nature. The moving tiles let people express their emotions and create their own personal imprint on the cabinet. Jenny says: “This was inspired by the idea that creating images and graphs might aid a psychological recovery process.”
Jenny looked into whether certain shapes, textures and patterns, and ideas such as rhythm, complexity and playfulness, can comfort and intrigue us as human beings. She explained that basing the patterns and colours on water, waves and sand enabled people to reverse and replay natural disasters like tsunamis and says: “The structure creates a tactile and rhythmic interaction with the user, through its ever-changing images and underlying meanings. The structures’ irresistible appearance encourages exploration and playfulness in whoever touches it, making it possible for all people to create their own ‘please touch’ art.
The beech wood cabinet features more than 2000 water jet cut, veneered and painted wooden parts, threaded onto a piano wire, that each can be individually flipped. One side of each wooden scale is painted blue, white or grey, while the other side has been left plain. The cabinet itself provides a space for small keepsakes from the past to be placed safely behind a closed door, and the high legs prevent the water from reaching them. A thoughtful and beautiful piece of design.