The IKEA Suite, work in process, 2010 - 2011
Kennedy is currently undertaking an extensive process based body of work investigating issues surrounding local resources, economies of scale, craft and social values. To ground this enquiry and to set up an interesting dialectic Kennedy is deploying an IKEA based aesthetic. This has thus far entailed replicating by hand articles of furniture from the Swedish international giant make from rhododendron (an invasive species) harvested in Ireland. Kennedy is also using IKEA furniture as raw material in an ‘inverse flow’, for use in producing handcrafted constructions with specific localised functions.
Both transformation and translation is at play in these processes and invariably information is lost or replaced with new meanings. These processes of transformation stem from a consideration with the ‘biography of the object’. That is to say, when objects as apparently static, mute entities reveal complicated entanglements with their conceptual, social and material biographies. Kennedy's research is stimulated by the circulation, flows and distribution of such ‘things’ with regard to orientation in the contemporary world and how articles become adapted, reformatted and transformed for new functions – and thus become accumulators of alternative meaning and values.
Customised IKEA unit as workbench
Handcrafted Rhododendron stool
IKEA Suite workshop
5 paddles carved from IKEA table
IKEA Suite workshop 2
'Living at Home' Interventions in Ikea catalogue
Research Image 'We're all from Smaland'