Fractal drawers


32 Responses to “Fractal drawers”

  1. semiotix says:

    @12: Yes, we can! In fact, each of my countably infinite things has a countably infinite number of components which really should each get their own drawer, and they’ll still all fit. Hooray for the fractal drawers!

    However, I’ve decided I don’t like the color, so I’m going to pass.

  2. historyman68 says:

    good thing, my wrists would never fit in their fractal handcuffs

  3. Takuan says:

    tres cool. Reminds me of “He Built A Crooked House” – either that or a BS Johnson.

  4. arkizzle says:

    Yeh, however, the fractal prison is the toughy.

  5. jowlsey says:

    I bet there’s a few top notch cabinet makers out there that would be happy to make that for quite a bit less than $20k. I like it so much, I’m tempted to see if I can track one down….

  6. Antinous says:

    Ah, Ojiichan’s up.

  7. Elorin says:

    Want want want want.
    It’s definitely a BS Johnson design….

  8. Takuan says:

    not necessarily. Sometimes I drop out of a tree.

  9. Belac says:

    It would be perfect if the bigger doors were hollow, and littler drawers came out of the bigger doors.

  10. MrScience says:

    #6: And storing larger objects in smaller drawers is equally unexpected. ;)

  11. Wareq says:

    Made me think of the Cabinet of Curiosity from Making Money.

  12. technogeek says:

    At $20K, you’re paying for it as art. And I think this design is pretty enough to qualify. I’ve seen paintings in that price range, and thought they were worth it… which doesn’t mean I bought ‘em.

    Reproducing it: My personal take is that the artist deserves some cash, as well as credit, for the concept. I’m not sure he’s automatically protected by copyright for a physical object, and he may not filed for a design patent which is the equivalent… but I’d still be a bit reluctant to simply replicate this without asking permission and supporting his efforts. Too ethical for my own good, perhaps. But I’m in a concept-based business myself, and I sorta feel I owe others the respect I’d want myself.

  13. technogeek says:

    #28: That brings up a thought for a variant — a chest of drawers which looks similar, but whose draws interlock within the space in unexpected ways, so one of the tiny drawers is actually quite long and so on. Decouple the size of the face from the size of the drawer, while maintaining a similar look.

  14. oz says:

    this thing is awesome. Probably not 20k awesome. Why all my furniture is not in fractal form is now a serious question though…

    @technogeek – sounds like you’ve got some ideas going of your own eh? Perhaps you should start making some and preferably get it out for (way) under the $20k tag.. please!

  15. semiotix says:

    This is great, because I have a countably infinite number of things I need to put in drawers. Even if I somehow fill this up, I can always move the stuff in drawer 1 to drawer 2, the stuff in drawer 2 to drawer 4, the stuff in drawer 3 to drawer 6, and so forth.

  16. noen says:

    That’s funny, I also have a countably infinite number of things to put away. I wonder if we can use the same cabinet?


  17. phillamb168 says:


    But seriously, where’s the ‘add to cart’ button?

  18. aarrgghh says:

    so what you putting in the teensy drawer?

  19. cactus says:

    Protip: to minimize time spent dusting, don’t buy any home furniture with an infinite surface area.

  20. Moon says:

    Hey, it’s a designer thing. If you have to ask the cost, you can’t afford it.


    /You could make your own, though.

  21. Angstrom says:

    of course, if you own one of these you must only store recursive objects in the drawers.

  22. eustace says:

    If you own Lego, storing recursive objects will be no challenge.

  23. technogeek says:

    I presume it’s on a turntable so you can access the drawers on all four sides.

    I think if I had one, I’d want to use it to house “wonderful” objects, so opening the drawers was a journey of discovery. I don’t think I’d have too much trouble finding an assortment of things worth pondering to suit the range of sizes. (Which doesn’t mean a larger drawer has to contain a larger object; sometimes going for unexpected contrast might work as well or better.)

    I may actually have to ask about price.

  24. Tenn says:

    Super neat. I think I’d want to have the drawers opened all the time!

  25. sonipitts says:

    I remember seeing this in print somewhere, and the designer said he made one to keep and one to display/sell and probably wouldn’t make any more because it was a giant pain in the ass. :-D

  26. Art says:

    Ha! Bravo.
    Really different and unique.
    Dare I ask the price?
    Great post. Thanks.

  27. arkizzle says:

    I LOVE it.

  28. technogeek says:

    Following links to the NY Times story: It was priced at $20K, partly because it’s apparently a real pain to construct.

    I’ll believe that.

    And as an art object, that may not be a wholly unreasonable price for it. Rather rich for my blood, though.

    I wonder whether it might be possible to buy plans and permission to construct one. Though I don’t know that my woodworking skills would come close to being able to pull this off…

  29. Kennric says:

    Pain to construct?

    OK, I’ll take that challenge. I have some nice maple in the shop right now, a computer and a pretty good knowledge of fractals.

    $20k? Somebody put $10k in escrow, and it’s yours. Seriously. I’ve been looking for some geeky projects to get some mileage out of all these tools…

  30. Bandango says:

    zomg at #6

  31. historyman68 says:

    how accurate do you have to be with the plans for it to be fractally?

  32. arkizzle says:


    Accurate in the plans or the workmanship?

    So long as it displays self-similarity at a recursive-scale factor, then you should be alright. I don’t think the fractal police will be knocking on your door ;)

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