All posts filed under: innovation

My Football Kit by Nendo

Inflatable soccer balls are hard to maintain in impoverished communities because of the unavailability of air pumps or the deterioration and damage of the tube inside the ball. In response, Japanese design firm Nendo has designed a non-inflatable soccer ball that gives the same kicking sensation as a standard ball. Inspired by the structure of the traditional Japanese woven bamboo ball, the My Football Kit is assembled with three types of components and includes a total of 54 parts. The instructions for assembly are designed like a picture book in easily understood illustrations. Instead of relying on internal air pressure, the ball uses the resilience of its surface material, soft, recycled polypropylene and elastomeric synthetic resin components, to bounce. The material won’t hurt bare feet and is unlikely to develop a sharp fractured surface that might cause injury, even if broken. If a component comes off during play, the interlocking structure ensures the ball will not disassemble. Components may be shipped in disassembled states in compact packages, potentially cutting shipping costs. The ball comes in multiple colors, …

Behind the Scenes: Mudshark Studios

On a recent trip to Portland, Oregon, I got to tour the production facility for Mudshark Studios, a one-stop shop for developing and producing ceramic objects, with CEO and co-founder Brett Binford. Binford, a well-known ceramicist, is also the owner and curator for the contemporary Eutectic Gallery, located in a storefront attached to the studios. In their 10,000-square-foot facility (an additional 7,000 square feet upstairs is mostly for mold and gallery storage), Mudshark offers model making, mold making, and production services for projects ranging from custom designed plates for Eleven Madison Park in New York City to lighting fixtures for Portland-based Schoolhouse Electric to technical parts for the aerospace industry. Other clients include Cedar and Moss, Barn Light Electric Co., Rejuvenation, and many more. After my tour, I couldn’t wait to head back to my friend’s house (ceramicist and painter Nicole Curcio), where I got to spend some time playing around in her pottery workshop. I won’t be showing a photo of my endeavors, but let’s just stay I tried and it wasn’t very good. …