Hybrid Design


Upon visiting the Metropolitan Museum of Art, I studied and photographed containers from different time periods and regions of the world. I was most interested in the various forms and shapes of the containers. I noticed things like the legs of the container, the detail in metal work, detail in carving, weaving patterns, paint, and the way of opening the container.

Despite its simple decor, one of my favorite containers is the skinny black cylindrical container and bean-shaped container (10th photo down) because they were used as a food container for samurais. I like how the cylindrical container has a strap on it so the samurais could put it on their backs.  I’m curious as to what kinds of food would fit in the cylindrical container.

Another one of my favorite containers is the one pictured in the 5th photo down from mid 4th century – mid 5th century Maya. I like the interaction of the U-shape and cylinder, how they work together as organic shapes, but also counter each other as disparate shapes. I also enjoy the detail in carvings of ballplayers with scrolls stretching from their tongues.


I left the MET feeling inspired by the variety of styles and purposes of containers.

I designed a square container with curved indents on the corners. The container can be opened and closed with fingers using the square hole in the middle. I imagine the box to be made of metal and to be around 1 foot high and 2.5 feet long on all four sides. The pattern on the box is of orchids and douglas fir branches because my name means “summer orchid” in Vietnamese and the state tree of Oregon, where I was born and raised, is the douglas fir. The combination represents me and my origins.

The object functions as a container and as a skateboarding obstacle. Each side of the box can be used to create different obstacles such as ramps, bars, and ledges. There would be slots in each panel so that the panels can connect without using nails, rivets, or any other fastener.

This hybrid object represents me in the pattern as well as its function because I love skateboarding.


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