Dara Oramas | Macrame Arm Sling Prototype | 2017 | Paracord

November 15, 2019 – February 16, 2020

Opening Reception: Friday, November 15, 2019 at 5:30 PM. Free and open to the public. RSVP required.

BODIES: SAIC Intro to Designed Objects

The landscape of designed objects is vast and constantly shifting: technically, culturally, politically and contextually. Not only are objects being designed for mass manufacture, but are also being designed to ask questions.

Megan Euker, School of the Art Institute of Chicago
Architecture, Interior Architecture and Designed Objects Program

During the Fall 2017 and 2018 semesters, students in Megan Euker’s Intro to Designed Objects class at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago created works in response to a single word prompt: “Bodies.” Using the collections at the International Museum of Surgical Science for inspiration, students began identifying medical or bodily constraints that could be alleviated through a specifically designed assistive device. Through a process of in-depth research and prototype testing, students created preliminary designs intended to increase accessibility, promote healthy behaviors, create comfort and improve safety. After consulting with medical professionals and undergoing critiques, they modified their ideas and remade their objects at full scale.

These designed objects create a social impact by making it easier for all kinds of bodies to move through the world. They also spark new questions: what mental and physical constraints do our bodies place on us all? What are the best uses of designed objects in the fields of health, medicine, and surgery? And how do you design your own environment to fit your day-to-day needs? Works in this exhibition explore these fundamental ideas of ability and the body.

Participating Artists

Bona Chun (b. 1985, Seoul, Korea) is a 1st year student in Master of Design in Designed Objects. Her work varies from daily essential items to conceptual objects. Combining both  organic and geometric shapes and lines, her ultimate goal is to design simple and sustainable objects that solve problems in an aesthetically beautiful way. 

Royce Cottingham (b. 1999, Atlanta, Georgia) is a Junior in the Fibers and Designed Objects department. Her work largely focuses on exploration with traditional materials. She hopes to experiment while combining her two focuses of fibers and designed objects.

Luisa De Silva Milmo (b. 1998, Monterrey Mexico) hopes to create works that merge her artistic focus in designed objects, furniture design, and interior architecture with her interest in psychology, wellness, and environmental matters.

Trevor Hormel (b. 1998, Santa Cruz, California) is a sculpture and design student in his sophomore year and mostly works in sculpture and object design. His work focuses on space and time and how we interact with them.

Shengxun Lin (b. 1994, Mongolia) is a senior product design student working with materials such as wood, metal, plastics, paper, fabric, and leather. After graduation, she wants to utilize technological and traditional design to inject more human-centered experiences and functionalities.

Dara Oramas (b. 1998, Caracas, Venezuela) is focused on Designed Objects at SAIC. Being a student, her artwork is currently focused on learning and exploring new skills and materials that include both handcrafted and digital-based techniques. In the future, she hopes to create designs that highlight how objects can afford certain actions and behaviors. 

Riley Pruitt (b. 1997, Defiance, Ohio) is focused on storytelling through sculpture (wood, 3D modeling) and writing. She hopes to work with any type of storytelling after school; whether with film, stage or literature.

Leyi (Angela) Song (2000, Nanjing, China) is focused on Designed Objects at SAIC. Currently, She likes to show her culture, friends and relatives, and experience in her works. In the future, she hopes to use new skills, such as technology, to show her personal thinking.

Crasianne Tirado (b.1999, Puerto Rico) is studying Visual Communication Design and Fibers at the School of The Art Institute of Chicago. Her work currently focuses on Puerto Rican politics and culture.

Curated by Megan Euker

One-Third Richard, Poplar wood, wood dye, 5.75″ h x 42.5″ w x 9″ d (with pedestal, 40.5″ h x 48.5″ w x 12″ d), 2014

Megan Euker is a Lecturer in the departments of Architecture, Interior Architecture and Designed Objects; Contemporary Practices; and Continuing Studies at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. “Bodies” is the second exhibition she has curated. 

Euker has been represented by Linda Warren Projects in Chicago since 2008 and featured in Matthew Rachman Gallery, Chicago; The University Club of Chicago; Chautauqua School of Art, New York; Prince Street Gallery, New York; The Storefront Project, New York; Togonon Gallery, San Francisco; College of DuPage, Illinois; Beverly Arts Center, Chicago; and Western Exhibitions, Chicago and other prestigious venues.

In 2017, at Casa Cava in Matera, Italy, a world heritage site, she presented the first Orphan Dream Award to Dr. Franco Locatelli. Her sculptures have appeared on Italian television including Canale 2 and TRM24. She presented the second and third Orphan Dream Awards to Dr. Michel Sadelain of Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center and Dr. John Tisdale of the National Institute of Health. 

Euker has been the recipient of such honors as a Fulbright Fellowship to Italy; two Faculty Enrichment Grants from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago; the Artists’ Fellowship, Inc. Grant; Change, Inc Grant;. Artist Assistance Grant; two CAAP (Community Arts Assistance Program) and two DCASE grants. Euker received her BFA and MFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago.

This project is partially supported by a CityArts Grant from the City of Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs & Special Events.

This program is partially supported by a grant from the Illinois Arts Council Agency.


Header Image: Shengxun Lin | Hold Me | 2017 | Resin, Acrylic, Cotton Webbing