Outstanding in Form | Others

"Airvase is a product that creates a container out of a single sheet of paper.

Slowly pull on the round paper marked with incisions and a mesh opens out to create a container that envelops air. The shape can be molded and changed freely for uses such as a bowl for small objects, to decorate a vase or to gift-wrap a bottle of wine, depending on the way you spread it out. While the airvase maintains the shape it has been manipulated into, it can be flattened to save space when not in use and then opened out again later. This intriguing bowl will catch your eye as each side of the paper creates a different impression every time you look at it.

The impetus for creating airvase was the staging of an exhibition held in Tokyo as part of a project to explore the potentials of processed paper, initiated by Japanese paper manufacturer KAMI NO KOUSAKUJO. Participating designers to this exhibition were each designated a theme color to use. Torafu was given green, and we thought we might be able to express the colour by somehow combining yellow and blue. When this original airvase is held up against the light, the two colors mix and a green color can be seen. We adopted an architectural approach, by trying to make incisions into a flat piece of paper to create a three-dimensional mesh form. With narrow spacing, the overall weight of the paper could be decreased. While the paper remains flexible, the mesh gained strength and we were able to make a form that could stand up by itself. The spacing of the cuts was also specially designed so that the vase can easily attain the elegant shape of a typical vase. Though numerous patterns have been studied, produced and used for exhibitions, displays and for the retail market since the release of the ‘blue x yellow' version, the fundamental airvase template itself remained unchanged, making it a highly adaptable design.

Made from paper, a universally familiar material, the airvase is not only easy for people to engage with but it is a highly affordable designed product. Users of all ages can enjoy the airvase, and it can even become a canvas to be decorated. Recent airvase workshops saw that both children and adults can easily enjoy decorating their very own original white airvases. An additional fascination of this activity is the unexpected nature of the designs that emerge when the vases are opened out. The airvase is more than a product, it can also become an enjoyable experience.

The paper vases included in each pack are packaged flat. Occupying the minimal possible volume, the packaging makes commercial and individual shipping highly efficient. The template design can accommodated for different types of paper, making it a platform for experimenting with new types of papers. There is also the potential to create airvases of various scales, as we have successfully made prototypes for purposes such as exhibitions. When the airvase eventually reaches the end of its life cycle, the vase and its package can be recycled.

Whatever the material, pattern or scale, the fundamental idea of the airvase remains - which is to add life , colour and joy to any environment. ”

Designers: Koichi Suzuno
                  Shinya Kamuro
Package graphics: TAKAIYAMA inc.
Country: Japan

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