During Dutch Design Week in 2016, Taiwanese designer Yi-Fei Chen presented her project named ‘Tear Gun’ that collects and freezes actual tears to shoot them back at the person who caused the cry. Brought up with a strong sense of authority, Chen was taught that disagreeing with teachers was rude. After an altercation with her tutor about an unrealistic deadline, Chen got reprimanded for not submitting that assignment on time. Yi-Fei Chen created this visual metaphor to show her personal struggle with speaking her mind.
The poetic concept allows the designer to channel her emotions and fight back against authority. Tear Gun is a pistol that collects tears in a silicon pocket under the eye, freezes them in a brass bottle of dry ice and shoots them like bullets. Yen-An Chen used her gun to point and shoot at her tutor, showing her deepest emotion about the disagreement. The design was Chen’s final Master’s project at the Design Academy of Eindhoven, visualizing her personal struggle in a poetic way. Tear Gun is Chen’s way to express her repressed emotions by using design as a vehicle to stand up for herself.
All images © Yen-An Chen