THE PORCELAIN THRONE
Idea - Design
The project intends to reinterpret a common household object —the toilet— as a magnificent piece of architecture, asking visitors to forfeit their known frame-of-reference and to question how they relate to the art, and subsequently the greater world, relative to their own scaled perspective.
From the interior, the bowl appears as a curvilinear, modern marvel. The S-trap becomes a bending, glossy hallway akin to those designed and executed by the likes of Zaha Hadid or Frank Gehry. From the exterior, however, this large non-portable john appears as a grand vault to match those of classical concert halls.
The project takes the familiar and allows people to rethink their limiting presuppositions, thus presenting new spatial and experiential affordances to something that appeared specific. By elevating the toilet—the only thing with more names than Jesus—to the role of architecture, we create a strong social commentary, finding beauty in the derelict, overlooked, and downright dirty. Throughout everyday life, cultural taboos and expectations govern how we behave and make judgments. Take, for example, the toilet. For a lot of people, it holds deep shame, literally where we empty our shit. However, on further inspection, it is revealed to be a modern masterpiece: a beautiful, curving, functional design, and a place that makes us feel better.