A lot of work went into creating the BAG installation for SOFA Chicago. The following details the steps taken to produce our sculptural installation!

First, we created a variety of concept sketches of potential installations.  After several meetings discussing the intent of the piece and logistics of feasibility, we decided that this would best represent the project: a giant plastic bag with many smaller reusable bags pouring out, drawn by Ann Savageau.

With the help of Carol Shu, Ann collected 500 plastic bags from around the community and heat pressed them together into panels that measured about three feet square. This number represents a conservative estimate of the amount used annually by the average American.

These panels were then assembled with a hot iron and great care to represent the exact dimensions of a typical shopping bag. The larger BAG form was ready to go!

Meanwhile, Chris Beer and Bob Morgan were busy figuring out logistics of the armature.

More drawings were made as the piece developed, and mockettes were fabricated to assist in production of the final piece. These sketches done by Chris Beer were sent to the installation team in Chicago to aid in planning for the final hanging of the work.

Tests were conducted to determine stability requirements for both the large bag form, and the many reusable bags that would be suspended from the interior.

This is the final shot of the armature before its breakdown and shipment.

Lighting tests were also conducted to illuminate the interior of the BAG. We are using special LED bar lights provided by the California Lighting and Technology Center, a division of the UC Davis Design Department.

As all this was happening, Jessica Dutt was working on prepping the smaller bags with monofilament stands that would suspend from the armature in the larger structure.

After all the pieces were collected together, we crated everything up to ship to Navy Pier in Chicago.

Stay tuned for installation shots and more!