reform, llc was invited by Project 4, an art gallery in Washington DC, to exhibit a collection of unused fabrication prototypes in their exhibit “Useless”.
The collection of prototypes contained in this exhibition, are indicative of the research and development process that is typical of reform. We consistently search for ways to implement new and innovative materials and construction strategies into our work, but believe it is equally important to integrate standard building materials and construction techniques by rethinking accepted practices and techniques. The prototypes seen here have reached an end to their “usefulness”. Though they were at one point a critical element in our design process, they were not incorporated in the final product and are therefore simply fragments or traces from the past.
As outlined in the exhibition catalog: “Whether by choice or by error, the creation of a useless object in a culture so focused on efficiency and convenience, is a compelling action. As art and design increasingly borrow each other’s priorities of aesthetics and value, the dissolution of use all together becomes an entertaining process to investigate within design. “Useless” will feature products, prototypes and objects that are either made to deny function, have been deemed, due to error, un-useable, or represented as such. The conditions surrounding the creation of these works therefore range from commercial design to subversive artistic acts. Amid these different motivations, all of the works present a contrariness to our everyday experience with material culture that is both humorous and insightful.”