How do we consider or experience a door as we enter and leave a room?
Perhaps it is old and doesn’t fit, leaks sound or whistles when the wind blows.
Perhaps it is a blank plane like many others in the apartment.
Maybe it is covered with stickers as a signboard for your personal space.
Doors are like cars; they are finished products.
No one until recently considered using them as a communication, an expressive surfaces. They are just ways to block movement between spaces.
But what if your door was a communication place? Maybe it has a LCD screen built right into it for leaving notes, showing a slide show, seeing who is inside and out through a small web active screen which can also show who has tagged you on Fb. A door can be so much more than an empty plane to block or allow access to a space. Sure, it’s a dumb object. Could or should it be smarter? Should a door be your communications and security ‘robot”?
A humorist/artist might might glue two water glasses (for short and tall listeners) to the outer surface. A nervous person installs a peep hole looking out and is greatly aggravated by the little neighbor who teases them. But the point is that a door is more than a barrier to a private or semi-private space. It is also a way finder or marker along a path blocked sometimes by a presence. Like passwords, search tools and hypertext; a door as we see from Alice in Wonderland is not just a door. So?
I propose the door project.
I am looking for some interesting people who will redesign their door and show us; the before, during, the trials and the “after”, and how they arrived at their ideas and how they will make their new door experience. The goal is to: improve the act of arrival at the door, then, how you do you gain access and finally, how do you feel as you move past the door and close it behind you?
I will provide; coaching, materials knowledge and methods tips, discussion of appropriate solutions, as well as idea pingpong and help with documentation and publication of the best projects. Process and discussion can take place over the members only page in this blog which is being developed now. The best answers will be shown and promoted.
I suggest the following materials: industrial wool felt (Industrie Felz), recycled solid cardboard (Karton), large format paper pads and 3M Films (grossformat Papierblock und 3M Klebfolie, double sided tape (doppelseitig Klebband oder Teppichkelbband) and wood sheet products (Holzwerkstoff Platten). I am reviewing a wide range of “sustainable” materials but you can look at Material Connection for some material inspiration.
Working methods: I suggest several sketches and then a cardboard model 1:5 with floor and ceiling planes. Play with color samples, 3-d motion, texture and material feel. When you like what you see at scale then make a sketch up with paper, cardboard and paint. Pay attention to how you want your guest to feel as they approach, contact and interact with the door and way. Paste up samples of final materials and see if they work 1:1 for the effect you want. Good design is a present those who might use it so consider your guests as well as that everyday feeling you want to present beginning at your door. And if you want your door to be a mood message than design it that way.
You may not have ownership or permissions to mess up the door in your apartment, but you can surely change the way if looks, feels, sound and maybe its smell. On a budget less than Fr. 150.00 with fresh materials, graphics and assemblage techniques, you can create a new experience which doesn’t damage the existing material. Please contact me to begin the process.
For some inspiration see what Karim Rashid did for “Sensunels”
or see the Designboom competition called: Door to Paradise