The mighty dragon, painted in blue upon a white china vase that sits perched on the mantle. It glows softly, from within it the crashes of thunder and heavy rain can be heard. Designed to add a certain ambience to a room, it is as much a white-noise machine as it is a conversation piece.

This project falls under the the wide umbrella of “fusion” aesthetics. Fusion aesthetic combines traditional and contemporary art. For example, this project would be described as “oriental futuristic”.  Defined by its mix of classic oriental art and modern technology. It is a piece of Targé (Target) pottery that I found in my alley many years ago. Someone had abandoned it but cared enough about it to not smash it and I’ve been holding onto it ever since. It’s white and has blue murals painted on it, imitating fine china. I had the bluetooth speaker, mood lamp, and yoga mat sitting around my house.

The vase is relatively large in size, with a base that stands about 12-13″ tall, 6-7″ in diameter at the widest point and a lid that extends upwards another 2-3″.

The build started by separating the base from the lid and creating a housing that holds a bluetooth speaker and lighting array, internally. This involved ensuring a gap of 2″ is produced by the housing (between the lid and the base) in order to generate the optimal acoustic shape for the soundwaves as they emerge from the body. The lighting array was built in to the housing including the opaque material and projects cleanly and evenly in 360 degrees. It (the lighting array) was originally to be tucked up in the lid as part of the housing that contains the bluetooth speaker. When it’ was all said and done, I ended up mounting the speaker on the base of the vase, as opposed to combining it with the lighting array.  These lights produced a futuristic glow that casts from the “floating” lid down upon the surrounding body of the vase. The next step was disassembling the mood light and cutting out the top and bottom. This was done to ensure that the sound from the speaker travelled unencumbered as it left and produced optimal sound quality. Then I took an old yoga mat I had laying around and cut it up before gluing it to the inside of the vase to add some sound deadening, again, for sound quality and overall user experience. Lastly, I took some toothpicks and affixed them in such a way that a gap was made between the lighting array housing and the opaque material. This not only gave the illusion that the top of the vase was floating, but improved overall airflow and thus sound quality.

The lights can change color, adding to the wide array of vibes the vase can produce. (It can also play music, as the sounds that emit from the internally mounted bluetooth speaker come from the user’s mobile device)

This is only short on my functional goals by one metric: the fact that the lights don’t react to the music/sound coming from the bluetooth speaker.

It nails what I was intending, artistically, and of that I’m very proud. It is a perfect combination of contemporary oriental aesthetics (the white and blue painted china) and futuristic aesthetic (modern tech such as lights, sounds, wireless signals).

What’s next is figuring out a way to make the lights react to soundwaves!

This was fun! Considering making more of them!

asian, atmosphere, blue, blue dragon, china, chine, contemporary, dragon, fusion, kelso, lightning, lights, modern, oriental, sound, thunder, Vase, white and blue
Previous Post
Upcycle Design Report: Surreal Symphony
Next Post
Miyazaki-Inspired Airship

2 Comments. Leave new

  • Lamp looks great! Lucky for you to find a the vase intact in the alley! Not sure how it would be done but it would be cool if the light could illuminate the art on the outside of the vase since the most of the vase seems to be in shadow.

  • Sierra Greeley
    February 25, 2024 2:07 pm

    Hello Kelso,
    I think that this lamp/ sound machine is beautiful! I love that you found the vase in an alley and chose to repurpose it. I think that art on the vase matches perfectly with the aesthetic that you are trying to portray. Have you thought about changing the light to a cooler color so it matches the blue art? This is a piece I’d love to have in my home, really good job!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Fill out this field
Fill out this field
Please enter a valid email address.