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“Rust Harvest” is an experimental materials project focused on rust.
The prevention of rust is an age-old problem in manufacturing. Rust has brought down planes, slowed ships, disabled engines, ruined bridges, spread through reinforced concrete, jammed guns, broken washing machines, and reduced unnumbered bicycles to useless scrap. While constantly cast as a devil, a closer look at rust reveals a variety of startlingly beautiful patterns and complex mixtures of color.
With this in mind, we believed that the attractive expressions of rust could be produced in quantity and used in new textures and products.
Through trial and error, we were able to develop a technique that allowed us to transfer only the rust from metal plates using acrylic resin. We expose these plates to light, rain, earth, and seawater to create rust, collect the rust, and then subject the plates to more weathering, which creates another crop to harvest in a process similar to an agricultural cycle. While we still use natural rust, we have taken into account manufacturing, distribution, and costs to create a complete system of production that has moved beyond the scope of design alone.
Unlike metal, the light penetrates rust trapped inside the acrylic resin, which creates a frozen moment from a process that has taken years. Because the resulting material can be used like ordinary acrylic resin, it holds limitless possibilities for various products, interior design, and construction.