Originaire du Mexique, Fernando Laposse est étudiant à la Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design à Londres. Il a imaginé la série de mobilier LUFA composée d’un lampadaire, d’un paravent, d’une table basse et de récipients en céramique.
Le fil rouge de ses créations est le luffa ou loofah, une plante grimpante tropicale produisant des fruits dont la forme rappelle celle des courgettes. Après séchage, le fruit est souvent utilisé comme éponge pour ses fibres douces et exfoliantes.
Fernando Laposse explore les qualités du luffa (légèreté, translucidité, isolation thermique, texture des fibres, absorption des chocs etc..) pour l’utiliser comme matériau de construction et l’incorporer dans la création d’objets fonctionnels.
Loofahs are actually the fruit from a vine that is related to pumpkins yet it grows vertically attaching itself to trees. Once this fruit matures it is then dried and harvested mainly to be used as a scrubbing device. What is wonderful about this fruit is that in tropical countries a farmer can produce up to 8000 of them per hectare since they can be guided vertically. They are also harvested after only 10 months; they use very little nutrients from the soil and leave almost no roots behind, making it a very sustainable option when compared to wood.
The project in general was a great learning experience with very inspiring results as I managed to take the loofah out of the shower and into the rest of the house giving it new purposes.
This project was the result of an extensive exploration of the qualities loofah to try and control it to a point where it can be used as a building material and to incorporate it into the creation of functional objects. Each of the resulting objects exploits one or many of the qualities of the material, like lightness, translucency, heat insulation, texture, shock absorption etc.The aesthetics of these objects came as a secondary reflection after many weeks of experimenting where the loofahs were cut in various ways, mixed with other materials like cement and wood, sewn together, flattened, and molded when they were wet to then dry them and have them conserve that particular shape. Once I had a mental archive of this very pragmatic information I went on to design the actual appearance of the objects, always making the material the main point of interest rather than the object itself.
Photos © Fernando Laposse
+ Via Fernando Laposse