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Made from hundreds of famous NYC “It’s a Pleasure to Serve You” coffee cups, filters and spoons, Christian DuCharme’s art installation asks difficult questions about pop culture’s ambivalent, sometimes dependent relationship to caffeine.
This week, NYC’s renowned Lafayette Espresso Bar + Market hosted an interior design and lighting expo that promoted a java-related theme throughout. The showstopper was doubtlessly Christian DuCharme’s coffee lamps, made entirely from the accessories found at your local café: stirrers, spoons, and filters. Soothing lights glimmer beneath the layers of triangular cut-outs of coffee cups and the folded lattices of paper filters. While the exhibition is genuinely intriguing, it leaves a wealth of questions unanswered: though it may have taken over 500 coffee cups to make the DuCharme’s installation, I’ve likely gulped more than that in the last two months alone—is that a bad thing? Should it be frowned upon? Ultimately, it’s clear humanity has to take the environmental and health implications of everyone’s favorite warm beverage more seriously.