Spill

These Mizukagami water mirrors, designed and created by Rikako Nagashima and Hideto Hyoudou in a collaboration featured at Japanese art gallery ROCKET, are certainly attention-grabbing, but also have the distinct feeling of almost being a mistake. Instead of each piece being a complete and seamless object, the artists have given it tendrils that drip to the ground. One in particular even has a crack in the middle which indicates the natural ripples seen when you disturb the surface of water with a rock, but can appear to be broken and disconcerting to viewers. All in all, this is one spill that I wouldn't have to clean up.

This series reminded me of Salvador Dali's painting The Disintegration of the Persistence of Memory as I made the visual link between the dripping mirrors and Dali's melting watches. Dali's work focused on the fragmentation of man's world notwithstanding universal balance, which meant that in spite of all attempts to reach utopia, it is that directive that could bring about man's demise.

Is this a growing trend in our industry lately? Is this deliberate imperfection a response to the pursuit of perfection that the creative world holds as its ultimate goal? Is the latter preferred achievement that has guided many freshly graduated students finally growing old?

I see designers struggle to make their work "perfect" and display it as such so that the world can know exactly what they stand for. But to what end? How much longer can we let this unsaid requirement lead us? The Mizukagami mirrors cannot be seen as something stereotypically whole and functional, but beauty has always been seen in the eye of the beholder. As long as we stand tall with conviction and belief in ourselves, everything we produce will always matter in some way to someone. Don't try to be like everyone else. Stand out and be proud to be different.