Mentor: Lam Wai Ming (設計集人)
Mentees: Isa Au (設計集人)
So Yuen Yi (獨立設計師)
Terry Yuen (獨立設計師)
In Hong Kong’s old days, people liked to keep their personal memorable things in an used metal moon cake box, may it be a photo of their idol or the handle of a can of soda they drank on their first date.
It is a box of precious moments.
You may even tug it under the bed to make sure you will never lose it, nor someone might find the box and peak into the very personal space of your heart.
But sooner or later you forget about the box as life goes on.
One day you rediscover the box when you are vacuuming. “I have totally forgotten about this!” Opening the long-forgotten moon cake box in excitement.
All the precious moments come back to you as you go thru the objects that once meant so much in your life.
As time goes by, the aged metal moon cake box has become a ritual to you. It brings you pleasant moments with deeper meaning every time you open the box.
This is a Jewellery Box. The design was inspired from a story of “when I lift the bed sheet and find my old tin Treasure Box”.
Jewellery is not only decorative objects to beautify our bodies — but they are also imbued with meaning as they are touched, carried, used and passed on to the next generation. When we designed this Jewellery Box, we did not want to make just an object, but also designing an event, and creating a moment. The beauty of the object becomes meaningful when it shares an intimate relationship with its owner, and we wish to make an object that will be kept and used for generations.
Stone For Eternity
Stones are one of the most permanent and long-lasting materials in the world. These stones could be rough rocks, precious stones, marbles or even diamonds. They are symbols of eternity. This Jewellery Box is like a cube of rock. It was created based on the idea of permanence.
Stone And Silk
Stone is a hard and long-lasting material, but it does not necessarily look and feel like that. With the aid of technology, we created a lightweight curtain for this box using composite slates. The box has a solid and heavy exterior, but its stone curtain is lightweight and soft like silk.
Stone Into Jade
Special beauty is often hidden behind a not-so-special mask. With this box, you will see the jewellery when you uncover a part of its stone curtain. It’s like peeling off the skin of rough black stone and revealing a polished piece of jade. It’s like finding a beautiful pearl inside an ugly shell. Our box balances two extreme states between interior and exterior, soft and hard, polished and rough.
Beauty Is Not Skin Deep
Michelangelo once said, “I saw the angel in the marble and carved until I set him free.” Discovering and unearthing beauty is an experience that makes you treasure the object of beauty. When you have to make an effort to discover beauty – like with our box, brushing the curtains aside or playing with its wooden and metal compartments, rotatable shelves and drawers, you will develop memories and feelings for it. You form a relationship with the box.
Beauty does not necessarily mean perfection. A mole on the face might be perceived as a flaw, an imperfection on a clean face, but it’s not. The mole on Elizabeth Taylor’s face has a certain sense of poetry to it. Not only does it not weaken her beauty, but strengthen it. The seemingly imperfect details in a creation complete its beauty. Our box has details that might scare a perfectionist – with its exposed screws, welded spots, primitive curtain hook and unpolished wood base. But these imperfections are evidence of craft – they imply the touch of the hand.
Making Sense of Sustainability
People will keep an object, or even a space, or a building for a very long time based on how it values to you. What makes an object worth keeping is a design that resonates with you. Objects have a shelf-life; but when it means something to you, its spirit and meaning goes beyond the shelf-life. Every time you open the box, we hope you treat the experience as special as unwrapping a present from your lover, or carefully laying your new-born baby down to her bed. As the Turkish novelist, Mehmet Ildan said, “you cannot separate the old furniture from the memories, and the memories from the old furniture.” With this Jewellery Box, opening it becomes a habit, a ritual, and as time pass, both you and the box store layers and layers of memories of these little habits. Perhaps the box would witness you taking out your favourite earrings out of it every day, and you would remember opening the box to find that special necklace that you wear for your daughter’s wedding parties. When the time comes, you will pass the box down to your next generation, and they will form new memories together. Even as time passes, the box will carry its history. Even as times passes, the spirit of the box goes on.
Design seems to be a “creative” business and we keeping “creating” new things every day. In fact, this process is supporting by our continuation of disposing and destroying things. In designing this cabinet, we also considered the idea of inheritance. The user might pass this on to her daughter or successor. It is an inheritance of blessings, love and memories. The box witnesses each generation’s lives, and carries on family and individuals’ values.”