Ubiquitous shipping containers measuring eight by eight by twenty feet carry goods from China to America. But, upon arrival, they are often emptied and disposed of. This project proposes recycling the flexible frame of a shipping container as a building material. Each container is a component in the home: living room, bathroom, kitchen, bedroom. Like Lego bricks, these lightweight containers have limitless combinations, allowing the occupant to design his or her own residence. The container’s natural durability, cheapness, and transportability make for a cost-effective and adaptable home.
A small, San Francisco style cable car passes through my colorful city of brick buildings and ornate street lamps. With a flick of the wrist and a light tug on a string, I can set the two cable cars in motion back and forth down a cobble stone street. This model measures one feet wide by four feet length and is made entirely of wood and colored paper.
Loft House is a design concept for a modern studio apartment. Loft House incorporates elements of turn-of-the-century warehouse architecture with modern building practices. Traditional warehouse spaces are large and airy; they also feature thick retaining walls and intricate ornamentation. With Loft House, the heavy cornices and detailed brickwork of traditional loft spaces are reduced to their most basic and pure forms. The open floor plan and exposed structural beams hint at this structure’s historical precedents.
Cities fold out from boxes. Let little wonder lands emerge.
Columbia in a Box
This is a model of a motorized concrete mixer truck. A recycled motor paired to a battery moves the truck forward and reverse. The driver’s cabin is decorated with steering wheel, cushioned seat, headlights, license plate and ladder. This motor is linked to shaft that ends at a yellow gear (visible in the photos below). This gear rotates the concrete mixer and connects to an adjustable trough from which the concrete can be poured when the truck arrives at the construction site. All details are realistically measured against actual trucks.
Below is a small scale model of a steam crane I built. Many of the small parts are made from found materials such as copper staples, beads, and metal brads.
Washington Park in Downtown Newark
(Above L to R) Broad Street Station, Polhemus House, YWCA Building, Newark Museum, Ballantine House,
Second Presbyterian Church, American Insurance Company, Newark Public Library
When I examine old pictures of my neighborhood in the city archives, I realize how much of my city disappeared in the past forty-some years. This sad trend will inevitably continue, as it does in most cities where old buildings outlive their use. If not in the form of my city’s physical destruction, this loss is in the form of my gradual loss of childhood memories. To reconcile this trend, I built the below model as my own souvenir. This keepsake will forever remind me of my identity in Newark.
The landmarks depicted are selected from my neighborhood and include my childhood home. The buildings are drawn with ink and pastel on thick paper, which is then cutout to form a two-dimensional silhouette. The trolleys travel back and forth down the street and are magnetically operated by a crank and hidden string beneath the street. The tracks guide the trains up, down, and into the tunnel. These trolleys are modeled on those that used to exist in Newark, long before my time here.
Perhaps, this models presents a more romanticized and idealized Newark than the city that may actually exist.
Newark Public Library
James Street Ensemble
Presbyterian Church / Broad St. Station
American Insurance / Public Library
The impressive range New York’s architecture, from the humblest home to the slenderest tower, powers my inspiration to create. I aim to capture my perceptions of bustling New York in this model. With a base measuring only 28 by 36 inches, I have built an intricate model replete with subway entrances, lampposts, and people. Whenever I glance at my tiny creation, I rejoice in knowing that my love of New York is within the breadth of my arms.
Chrysler & Empire
Chrsysler and Empire
Bird’s Eye View
New York by Night
Paper Cutout Models