Bora – Ephemeral Habitat

For this project, I initially wanted to use the layering of wood to create a dynamic piece. I planned out a few ideas, trying my best to explore ways in which I could use the desk and space around it to create a composition that highlights my piece in the provided space. I then began to focus on ways of fixing together many layers of wood. I toyed with the idea of string for a while but settled on a dowel for stability. I finally arrived at my general plan of creating a few pods of layered, laser-cut wood from the legs or surface of the table. I made an interesting composition based on the concept of 3 pods, then narrowed it down to only 2 for the sake of time.

I created the two files for each pod, then laid them out, layer by layer, until they could all be ready for the laser-cutter. I then encountered an issue: I couldn’t find wood of the proper dimensions. I made the decision to only cut out the small pod. I then had to rethink the composition and how I’d display the work while getting my original idea across still.

Next, I cut my dowel down into pieces that would work with the size of the pod. I decided to drill a hole in the pod, rather than fixing on a hook to hang as it would require fewer materials. Finally, I used a nail gun to fix the bottom layer of the pod onto the dowel. I then stacked all remaining layers on top, leaving room at the top of the dowel to feed a string through the hole. My piece was structurally sound and ready to go!

The final desk installation looked like this.

For my booklet and story, I wrote about the two types of pods, photoshopping several home dwellings into the image and using an alternate, ‘unfolded’ image of my pod as the community dwelling, as I intended to make but was unable to.

The story above reads “The Moyari are a species of avian humanoids who reside in lush rainforests. They live in habitats called Bora, nestled away safely in the tallest of tree branches. Their homes are accessible by flight, keeping the Moyari safe from land-dwelling predators. Each home has a small, tunnel-like entrance that opens into a larger interior space, allowing for large families to live within. They gather inside their homes to eat and sleep, but do enjoy spending time in the surrounding forest trees. These creatures strongly value community and gather in a structure called a Borana. Each small community has one Borana that the Moyari use to house casual socialization as well as formal celebrations or gatherings. In general, the Borana is similar to the Bora, however, the community space is much larger and has more uniquely shaped interior rooms, as visible by the outside shape, which is much different than the standard shapes of the home dwellings.”

Upon reflection, I used to think that my misfortune with obtaining the correct wood materials would lead to the demise of my project, but when I completed the piece and created the digital composition, I was fairly happy with the turnout. I think the visual helps with my intention and to connect the story to the piece I ended up creating. I would’ve created the second pod, as intended, if I had the material, but I am still happy with my outcome!

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