Arindam Kalita

The tea box

Class of: 2027

Major: Product Design BFA

Medium: Wood

Faculty: Aviva Maya Shulem

Prompt: This was the second project of the Space and materiality class. The prompt of the project was to make an object that relates to the community that we belong or relate. The same was to be done while keeping in mind the 3d design elements of Plane, space and shape

This project was about highlighting the community that I belong or relate to. I come from a state in the Northeastern part of India called Assam. Tea plays a huge role in the Assamese culture. This Tea box was made keeping in mind the symbols of the Assamese culture. The laminated patterns on the exterior was inspired from the Gamusa (a traditional fabric). The lid of the box also features illustrations of Bihu dance which is the traditional dance form of the state.

The box itself has a lid and a drawer. The top part is supposed to be the compartment for two types of tea and the drawer acts as a storage for the spices that are supposed to go in the tea. The designs are made using the lamination technique. First the the individual pieces were cut using the laser printers than pasted on the surface of the wood base to create the effect of carved wood. The box was stained using tea as well as its a more sustainable form of staining wood and also a good replacement for toxic artificial stains. The tea stain gives this box its soothing yellow bamboo colored patina.

This tea box acts as an object that uses tea as a source to express the Assames culture on its five surfaces.