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Otto (a hungry footstool)

In a contemporary household, the ottoman has become synonymous with the footstool. It is intended to act as a seat for your feet, but also acts as storage, seating and table space. The footstool is a weird concept for me. We burden this object and create a relationship with it by resting our feet on it’s “back” in order to increase comfort. With Otto, I wanted to emphasize the anatomy of the footstool as an object, while also personifying it. With this project I focused on material reduction of the ottoman, by baring the traditionally hidden legs and opening the cushion, allowing the user to feed Otto with their feet or objects.

I used wood and textile methods, because to me they contain a large amount of emotional endurance; due to their connotations with nostalgia, tradition, and materiality. Both these processes also appealed to my affinity for personifying objects and creating characters, which is prevalent in my work. I wanted to explore this in conjunction with re-contextualizing the footstool, because it’s existence is so grounded in history.