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Fabric art offers tuft love in Croatia

Projects | May 1, 2012 | By:

In a former church in Pula, Croatia, a huge object with trumpet-like appendages hangs from the rafters, with each opening an inviting red-carpeted cave. The installation, “Tuft Pula,” is the latest startling creation of Numen/For Use, a Croatian-Austrian design collective working in the fields of scenography, industrial and spatial design and conceptual art. Many Numen/For Use experiential artworks use adhesive tape for temporary installations; in “Tuft Pula,” the tape generates a primary form that is self-contained and transferable.

The rough, industrial surface of carpet backing forms the exterior of “Tuft Pula,” while the interior consists of soft organic tunnels of tufted red carpet. The object, suspended on very thin steel ropes more than nine feet off the floor, rocks as people enter. “Visitors who go into the installation are so, so careful and they are always a bit scared to fall down or out of the installation,” according to a Numen/For Use interview excerpt. The combination of anxiety and comfort visitors feel in the inviting curves of carpeted tunnels is part of the experience. “After the initial caution, the user starts perceiving the functional aspect of the installation, utilizing the softness and sound isolation … as an inward facing collective sofa.”

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