FrozenPlastic lab was founded in 2011 as the evolution of my final bachelor project (industrial design) at Holon Institute of Technology- Israel. The Lab was born out of a curiosity about how, why and when deformities and abnormalities occur within the plastic industry. Frozenplastic is an exploration on the side effects and defects resulting from the production of plastics.
FrozenPlastic represents a new kind of industry in which traditional machine lines can produce special, one-of-a-kind products.
Special molds are used in The Lab to allow more spontaneity in the process of shaping each piece. While conventional methods in the plastic industry use mechanical and controlled methods to mass produce products, the goal of FrozenPlastic is to allow more flexibility and free flow in the products creation. I combine plastics and other special materials with the molds that allow free movement and unique sculptures. The working process seeks to understand different elements and phenomenon that can be achieved with the materials and from this, the product is designed. This spontaneous process makes each piece extremely unique and individual.
The material used is a low density polyethylene that has been purchased in a plastic recycling factory in Israel. Before each piece took on its current form, it was a plastic bag.
For me, the idea of working with industrial mistakes was initially sparked by the story ‘Steadfast Tin Soldier‘ by Danish author Hans Christian Andersen. In the beginning of the story, we are told about 25 tin soldiers that are poured from the same tin cup. But because the material runs out, the last soldier comes out with only one leg. I found this to be very curious and illogical, so I began to research the mold-pouring methods and techniques of 18th century Europe, the time in which the story was written. I discovered that the entry hole to the mold was at the side of the soldiers‘ heads, rather than the area of the legs as it is done today.
But if this is the case, and the tin was poured through the head, we would expect a soldier without a head, not a leg. Furthermore, even if the one-legged soldier’s tin was poured from the bottom of the mold, we should have a soldier with no legs at all, rather than one complete leg and one missing. This anomaly led me to the idea that the tin used to create the hero of our story was indeed poured through the head, but a trapped air bubble in the leg resulted in this “mistake.”
No matter how hard I looked, no plastics factory would allow me to experiment with their machinery. Therefore, I needed to build my own machine to melt plastic.
The machine I built, powered by a nearby lathe, allows me to play with temperature, materials, and pouring angles, and includes various dyes to fit my molds.