Inspired by 20th century steamer trunks, Trunk Show is a serial structure of unique boxes set to 6-inch increments that preference the collection of things by size and qualities over subject or theme. Each box is a visual link to a site or project that is both located elsewhere in the school, and in the mind of the designer. The boxes house a collection of architectural artifacts, media, and curiosities both found and made by fifteen thesis students.
While collecting has long fascinated both architects and artists alike, the trunk is an object that is rarely on display. Often relegated to cruise ship closets or attic storage, it more recently appeared as a key element in Joseph Cornells’ scientific and not-so-scientific assemblies, as the dissolution of found objects and museum treasures by Claes Oldenburg, and as a furniture series in Supersurface by Superstudio. By offering a physical limit, the trunk strikes a balance between fashionable accessory and portable closet, organizing and disciplining the media within its structure.
To accommodate the smorgasbord of media at Syracuse School of Architecture the grid, the boxes, the bases, and lids of the trunks range incrementally in depth, width, and height. The boxes and bases link an object and a series, a container and a room, or a continuous environment and repository for display. Trunk Show functions to discipline content and rooms of all shapes and sizes.