We are introducing an educational column to share what we have learned from 32 years designing and creating with fabric.
Look through a microscope at a slide of cells and behold the tiny, almost innumerable micro-organisms bumping around together in a soup of life. Now imagine yourself in the midst of those cells, in that world under the microscope, shrunk down to cellular size, walking around in a seemingly infinite landscape of cellular structures. This is the experience you can have in the University of Michigan Museum of Natural History’s new exhibit, Under the Microscope.
At the 2019 Industrial Fabrics Association International Expo, the IFAI announced the winners of their annual International Achievement Awards. Five projects that Transformit designed, fabricated, and/or contributed to were recipients of an IAA. Each of these installations represent a collaboration of art and design with multiple partners.
Special thanks and congratulations to our co-winners and collaborators: Conservation International, Cool Shadow (of Loisos + Ubbelohde), Maine Craft Gallery, Quiring General, Scattergood Design, SmithGroup, Thinc Design, Vision3, and Studio HHH, who's original sculpture 'Serpentine', created for Illuminus Boston and featuring eight Transformit 'Pixies', won Best in Category for Fabric Environments as well as receiving top honors with an Award of Excellence in the Fabric Art sub-category.
2019 Industrial Fabrics Association International / International Achievement Awards
Best in Category — Fabric Environments
Award of Excellence — Fabric Environments / Fabric Art
Several years ago we did a really fun project with the Newport Aquarium in Newport, Kentucky. They were renovating the viewing theater for their giant shark-tank, Shark Ray Bay, and invited Transformit to create a fabric surround to frame the large acryllic window into the tank. I like to think our designers were channelling their inner Neptune when they framed the tank window with a dynamic "splash."
When the aquarium was designing their latest exhibit, Stingray Hideaway, they wanted an overhead shade structure that tied in thematically to the exhibit. We were delighted when the Newport Aquarium called us to work with them again and collaborate on their idea. For Stingray Hideaway we created a custom fabric sculpture of sixteen Cownose Rays swimming in a school overhead. Each ray measures six feet long by eight feet wide and one foot tall, the completed piece is 34’ long by 29’ wide by 10’ high and its installation overhead rises from 15’ to 25’ above the floor.
|BizBash Live / Photo Michael Scott|
We have a lot of fun seeing and making friends in the events industry at trade shows. When we design our booth for shows, Transformit’s founder and president, Cindy Thompson, loves to bring a new approach each year that brings a bit of Transformit to the trade show floor. For event industry trade shows Cindy created an opportunity for show attendees to be an ‘angel’.
In July 2010, art director Caleb Brown asked us to help design a new exhibit for The North Face at Outdoor Retailer, a twice-yearly industry show in Salt Lake City. For years, The North Face had exhibited privately, in meeting rooms away from the main show floor. New management wanted to rejoin the activity on the show floor, and to invite the entire show audience to experience The North Face.
In May of 2008, a new museum about Woodstock and the Sixties opened in Bethel, NY on the site of the 1969 Woodstock festival. Designed by Gallagher & Associates, the museum features artifacts, interactive displays and never-before-seen film footage. The New York Times called it "... a tie-dyed time machine that puts those iconic three days of peace, love and music into historical context."
photo courtesy The Museum at Bethel Woods