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jiyeon chun
industrial design @ cmu

I aim to create products and experiences that heal our relationship to the material world by emphasizing sustainability, preciousness, and our sense of touch.

🍊


jiyeon chun
industrial design @ cmu

I aim to create products and experiences that heal our relationship to the material world by emphasizing sustainability, preciousness, and our sense of touch.


Crucible Redesign — a Poetic Object

October 2021

Duration: 2 Weeks



A concept object reimagining the crucible — a ceramic container used to melt and refine metals — wherein the form alludes to the transformation that occurs inside during this process. An exploration in the semantics of form and the storytelling of an object, and an exercise in craft. 


Final model hand-crafted with foam and gesso.


Concept Sketch & Storyboard.

The product in concept would come with a set of interchangeable letterform molds in the typeface Caslon, to be used to create precious metal keepsakes. 



Exploratory Sketches



Initial explorations were focused on what kind of visual language I wanted my object to communicate (adjectives such as heavy, soft, static), and how the object might afford usage and tell a story through its form. 



Concept Development


Among my ideas, I was most drawn to those that alluded to the process of what happens inside the crucible itself. I was intrigued by the phenomenon of the contents of the crucible coming out chemically differently from the fire than as it went in— more pure, more true, more beautiful. To expand on this idea of the crucible being a vessel for change and transformation, I made my crucible a mold as well, so that the metal might come out not only chemically, but also physically differently than when it first entered. 

To express my concept, I began to think about how the transition between simple shapes within one object may act as a metaphor for the transformation that happens inside— for example, circular faces blending into square faces, horizontal planes curving over into vertical planes, etc.

Finally, I landed on this idea for a slightly crude, block-y form where the circular top face transforms into square faces through other curves facets and transitions. Although not so elaborate of an outer appearance, I enjoyed the simplistic look that allowed the more precious, special aspect to be found within the object itself, emphasizing a sense of wonder and mystery for the unseen process inside, subtly alluded to in the details of the appearance.



Form Iterations & Craft Process



From left to right:
grey foam sketch models, playing with different transitional faces and twist features, to pink foam model iterations refining specific measurements, testing paint, and figuring out how to craft my concave feature. 



(Crucible content begins 2:11)





Final