“How to evaluate a box when its practical function of containing is suspended, and in what ways can a box carry invisible contents in the context of contemporary silversmithing ?”
Dorothy Lu‘s Life is a Box explores that most everyday of items – the box. Each of Lu’s boxes – The four container-like objects – explore through experiments with materials, textures and structures how the edges, walls and rules we construct around us limit our behaviour. She says “Life is always mysterious, you can never tell what is happening, just like you cannot see through a sealed box and know the content until it is opened”.
Boxes are seen as a normal, unremarkable objects. They are seen in different places, from neighbourhood shops to national museums, from an Emperor’s palace to a common peasant’s bungalow. They occur everywhere in almost all situations. According to Eric Delieb in the preface of his book Silver Boxes, Boxes are created to serve specific functions, but is that all?
This project ‘Life is a Box: What’s Inside’ aims to explores and examines how the invisible content is contained in a box and how it is presented, by not only the design and making, but interacting with the boxes in different stages of the project. Unlike many other creative works inspired by the classic line ‘My mom always said life was like a box of chocolates, you never know what you’re gonna get’ in Forrest Gump, the project focuses more on the box than the chocolate.
Lu believes people’s lives can be compared to a conceptual box: with edges and walls of rules, limiting people’s behaviors, a box is abstractly similar to humans living space
The project was conducted in a careful manner with creative working sessions interwoven with research. Existing contemporary silversmithing was combined with creative ideas, in a series of continuous experiments with materials, textures and structures. Lu adopted synesthesia as a design method in the belief that it would enable the work to impart a deeper and more solid impression on audiences from different walks of life.