Nature Of Things: Sculpture No.1

The Perishable Vases series draws its inspiration from objects, vases and ornaments in Victor Horta’s home and archives.

The vases were created as a paradox to examine the way we value things around us. The very agile relationship between the collector and the object, lasting most probably less than a lifetime, is a crucial interest point to this work. Having partial control over the object and acknowledging decay as an inherent part of its aesthetic creates this almost uncomfortable notion of wanting to preserve the item no matter what. How does this relationship make us look at the objects we posses?

Together with Laboratoire de Chimie Agro-Industrielle, Rusak investigated the ways to increase the decay kinetics of the Perishable Vases. The research project consisted of building a bibliography of potential binders, an investigation into different means of degradation, and tests of different enzyme and bacterial activity.

The research led to further investigation and an idea of creating a microclimate for perishable materials. Thus, an incubator was constructed, whose main purpose has been to create a stable, controlled environment conducive to the research and study of the material. The incubator has maintained high temperature and humidity, and diffused bacterias and enzymes that speed up the process of degradation and decay. As an effect, the perishable materials seemed dredged from dreams, referencing another reality, mirroring the preserved world of Victor Horta’s house.


170 (H) x 240 (W) x 80 (D) cm

66.9 (H) x 94.5 (W) x 31.5 (D) inches



Aluminium, acrylic, watering and heating system, bacteria, flowers, organic binders: shellac, tree resins, flour, sugar, sand, clay.


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