Symbiotic Objects by Xiang Guan is a project that aims to reimagine our relationship to our objects and products through making and experimentation. It looks to a future where this relationship could become symbiotic and questions whether “if symbiosis existed, would we find more meaning and possibilities in everyday objects?”
This potential symbiosis is demonstrated through a series of objects that require a human to complete them, in this case, a table, chair and lamp. Each object has a multiplicity of functions and encourages a more active relationship with our environment. For example, the chair and table (when isolated) will fall unless a human is present to “prop them up” and the lamp will only turn on when worn as a hat. Perhaps not the easiest objects to use, they are instead meant to highlight the bond that exists between us and our everyday objects. In turn, encouraging a mutual respect meaning that we would be less likely to throw them away. Guan, who studied MA Industrial Design at Central Saint Martins, states on his website that these kinds of symbiotic objects could challenge modern cultures of consumption by creating products less likely to encounter obsolescence and therefore “eliminate unnecessary waste in the spirit of a sustainable world.”
About the Author
Ruby joined the It’s Nice That team as an editorial assistant in September 2017 after graduating from the Graphic Communication Design course at Central Saint Martins. In April 2018, she became a staff writer and in August 2019, she was made associate editor. Get in contact with Ruby about ideas you may have for long-form stories on the site.