Tessa’s Designer Pick – Maya Ben David


Tessa Blokland  

IKEBANA Meets Digital Technology, a project by Maya Ben David in collaboration with FabCafe Tokyo, Studio Artec, master craftsman Mr.Yuji Ueno, Loft Works and Israel Embassy in Tokyo.

Retrospectively, the work of Israeli designer and Design Academy Eindhoven alumnus Maya Ben David (1980) for world’s leading manufacturers of resin-based household and garden consumer products, Keter Plastic, attracted my attention. What I like about her work is that Ben David is mixing traditional materials with all kinds of high-end technologies, among others 3D printing. Her work shows a sense of realism with a surprising twist of which I have selected a few in this week’s blog post.

This 3D printing project, Bypass, was already featured in our blog in 2015, and it is still a great project! Bypass uses the opportunity of design freedom that 3D printing provides. Instead of being bound to the standard pipe fitting system, with 3D printing you can create your own alternative fittings according to how you wish the pipes will go and how you imagine the space to be.

I think you can see Digital Garden as a hyper-modern reflection and repetition of nature. With this project, Ben David explores the meaning of natural versus artificial, time and technology. What is real and what is reality? Will artificial life continue forever or will it decay like natural flowers do?

Like I mentioned in the introduction, it was through the work for Keter that the work of Ben David really attracted my attention. For Keter, she developed and designed the Knitted Collection, which is sold worldwide. To get the right 3-dimensional texture, Ben David used 3D printing in the development of the collection before creating the expensive molds for mass production.

Revolution Vase is part of the Save as [ ] project. Save as [ ] is an online platform proposing a contemporary social memory mechanism, where people can select their own figure of memory,  download it for free and 3D print the object.

The last project that is twisting reality is Ikebana 0101 (also top image), integrating traditional Ikebana, the Japanese art of flower arrangement, with 3d printing technology. Ben David worked closely together with a Japanese Ikebana artist, Yuji  Ueno. Also in this project artificial and natural play an important role. Ben David states on her website:  “Observing and working with the 3D printing flowers Ueno-san felt it cannot be seen as “Artificial” rather as “Natural” since it is us humans who make it to be what it is. In that sense, the artificial and the natural are not opposites but rather a continuation.”

LEO Lane_Designer Pick_MayaBenDavid_1

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