David Ross (he/him)
My design interests surround environmentally responsible materials and methods of production, the combination of digital and craft methodologies, the democratisation of design, and the importance of interior design to the creation and expression of self-identity.
I enjoy finding and exploring connections between interior design and often seemingly unconnected subjects. I believe it is important to use experimentation as a method of learning, using both analogue and digital methods to investigate materials, forms and functions.
Prior to studying for a masters in Interior Design I completed an undergraduate MEng in Product Design Engineering, also at the GSA. In 2011 I co-founded Glasgow-based design community Analogue Social, assisting in the organising of design events across Scotland. I have gained experience working as a designer in Glasgow, Rotterdam and Leipzig and have several years experience working for a sustainable timber supplier in the Highlands.
Digital Design – Craft Fabrication
Recognising the increasing uptake of domestic craft activities seen during the COVID pandemic lockdowns, and the need driven by climate change to reconsider the materials we use and our relationships to the objects we surround ourselves with, this project proposes a series of interior objects to be crafted in and for the domestic environment, using waste material and other environmentally responsible materials.
Craft within two contrasting areas of Scotland (Glasgow and Argyll) formed the basis for the project research, with interviews and observation of craft practitioners working in these areas conducted. Both analogue and digital methods were employed to process, manipulate and experiment with the data collected, and through this, new interior objects of domestic craft have been proposed. The forms of the proposed objects speak directly of the processes through which they have developed, highlighting the wider environmental connections of the objects.
Hand crafting objects for your own domestic environment results in objects valued on many levels. From valuing simply for the enjoyment of making or the ability to create something useful, to valuing these crafted objects’ ability to store memories or to express self-identity through their creation and display. In creating interior objects which are highly valued, their future responsible use is secured.
Digital Design – Craft Fabrication: Craft Pattern
Example of a ‘Craft Pattern’ – instructions for making one of the proposed objects, in this case the Woven Willow Screen.
Digital Design – Craft Fabrication: Crafting Prototypes
The proposed crafts have been trialled in the domestic environment.
Time is Malleable
When a Midwinter festival goes wrong, our hosts – a Neolithic tribal leader, a magpie and a standing stone, are accidentally transported through time, from the Land of the Pishinrain 2628BC to Argyll 2031AD. Arriving in Glasgow, they are fascinated by the scale and acoustic properties of the Gartcraig Road salt dome and decide on this as the site of their future festivals and ceremonies. Making use of the unfamiliar objects from their new material world, they design new ceremonies based on those of their past, with a wish to reconnect with their past lives through these familiar acts. Time is Malleable is a fictional exhibition of the assemblages of objects created by our Hosts for this purpose. The exhibition presents an investigation into material culture and the role objects play in the creation of memory, ceremony, relationships and time.
Time is Malleable: Exhibition Ephemera
The fictional exhibition was presented through the exhibition ephemera printed for the project – exhibition guide, postcards and posters.
The Bath Lane Alien-Alien
The Bath Lane Alien-Alien is a project which explores the developing communication and collaboration between humans and an ‘alien-alien’ fungus living within the materials of Bath Lane.
Following site observations of the city block at 145-173 Bath Street & 142-146 Bath Lane, a science fiction narrative was created, inspired by the photographs, clay imprints and sounds recorded during site visits. In creating composite images using the recorded material, ghostly appearances were seen within the images, taken to be communication attempts by an alien-alien (a radically non-human creature) living within the materials of Bath Lane. The narrative explores the development of communication between the alien-alien and human visitors through the creation of a common alphabet, developed from features of the built environment of the city block within which the alien-alien lives. Communication tiles are created and installed on site, from which the alien-alien responds through harvestable growths. These growths are utilised by humans in the construction of a sculpture park within Bath Lane, making the site a tourist attraction. However, as human interest increases, it becomes unclear whether the human – alien-alien relationship is a symbiotic one, or whether this is another example of human exploitation of a non-human entity which we fail to fully understand or respect.
To fit the science fiction narrative, the project was presented through a fictional scientific report, documenting the discovery of the alien-alien and the development of the communication strategy and opening of a sculpture park. Excerpts from this document are shown below.