Permutations (2011) was a demonstration project expressing the potential for domestic design to embrace environmentally responsible technology at the scale of batch production. At the time of the project, compact fluorescent bulbs (CFLs) were the most efficient lighting solution on the household market. Permutations was developed as a system for lighting objects comprised of interchangeable parts that could be combined to generate a seemingly limitless array of lamps and lighting effects and consequently transform the cool reception of CFL technology into one of explosive excitement. With generous support from Evonik (Europe’s largest acrylic producer) and Ikea (at Bollingbrook, IL).

Acrylic, CFL and LED bulbs

Approx. 8 in. (length) x 8 in. (dia.)

Permutations was exhibited at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago in 2011 and were on display at the SMALL Manufacturing Alliance exhibition at the Chicago Cultural Center in 2012, and in 2013 were installed permanently at The Plant, a vertical farm and “larger-than-life experiment and working model for closing waste, resource and energy loops. The facility will eventually divert over 10,000 tons of food waste from landfills each year, while providing enough electricity to power over 250 homes.”