SAFEWORD: A platform for artists of all medium. Creative direction for the launch event on May 24, 2019. ︎

South Willamsburg, Brooklyn, New York          
Paul Kheem, Adam Santiago, Kyle Sheth, Spring 2019

Exhibition Design • Experience Design • Event Production • Art Direction • Branding

SAFEWORD is a platform for artists of all medium. Collaborative work of visual artists, musicians and technology professionals is showcased through seasonal exhibitions. The first event was held on May 24, 2019 in Williamsburg, New York, featuring Geotheory, W.Y Huang, Daye Beats, ADAMBOY, Davy Wreck, Pretend Labs, Kyle Sheth and myself. I participated to design their first exhibition.


images by Joe DāJour


The main visual elements of the exhibiton are the following: video, glitch, tech, sci-fi, hidden and industrial. The curation of the images for the promotional materials followed the aesthetics of the brand. The color schemes are Red(#FF0000), Green(#00FF00), and Blue(#0000FF), the three primary colors that form all the images that we see through digital screens. 

Site Visit - 250 S 5th St, Brooklyn, NY

The event was held at an event space in Williamsburg, New York. The focus was on utilizing the given architecture and create a completely different experience from the former events that were held in the space. The unique long floorplan of the event place was not a typical gallery space to exhibit art works. The team sectioned off the space according to the architecture to create different zones for various experiences and reduced all the existing visual elements that did not follow the design language of the brand.

Introduction of the participating artists

Daye Beats, W.Y Huang, Pretend Labs, Geotheory, Kyle Sheth, ADAMBOY, Davy Wreck, Paul Kheem

Line drawings by Paul Kheem, edited by Kyle sheth

Projection Mapping

The three arches that are part of the building structure was utilized as a screen to map projection. The visuals corresponded to the music that was performed throughout the event.


Installation- Infinity Tunnel

Installation by Kyle Sheth

Infinity Tunnel is an installation by the featured visual artist, Kyle Sheth. By projecting on mesh screens that are tied on to the black frames, it creates a parallel effect that the audience can enter and immerse themselves.

Virtual Reality Experience

Pretend Labs

Primary focus of the event was to give value to the end-users by providing them with digital takeaways. VR portrait experience was operated by Pretend Labs, an experiential design studio based in New York City specializng in the intersection between emerging technologies, brands and culture.


Preparation of the event required setting up audio equipments, visual installations, projectors and lighting for the venue. 


Cone Bench: An outdoor bench assembled using traffic cones in varying orientations. Reinterpreting an everyday object through it’s structural and sculptural quality. ︎trafficcones.archive

Pratt Institute, Brooklyn Museum           
Paul Kheem, Fall 2018

Furniture Design • Product Engineering • Prototyping

63” x 10.5” x 18.5”
HDPE, Marine-grade Plywood, Traffic Cones



Aside from its vibrant color, traffic cones have interesting forms that can be stacked and laid out geometrically. Also, its bottom can be structurally beneficial to be attached to a different material. 

Structural Quality

Cones can distribute weight very well and also resist tensile stress when it is laid in an intersecting zig-zag format, which worked as a cross beam for the bench. 

Making Process

Interlocking Plywood, Brass inserts and CNC milled UV protective HDPE. The CNC milled circular plates structurally bond with the bottom structure of the traffic cones.

Cone Bench is installed in the Brooklyn Museum backyard. (June, 2019 - Sept, 2019)


Doctor’s Lamp: Surgical headlamp that cantilevers weight to achieve balance, allowing a physician, surgeon, or dental professional to perform exams without causing them neck pain.

Pratt Institute New York           
Paul Kheem, Fall 2018

Medical Design • Wearable Design • Research • Prototyping

User Observation

Dr. Sungkook Kim / Dentist

Dr. Kim administers a dental clinic in Yeongju, South Korea. He works from 9 am to 6 pm on the weekdays. Dr. Kim uses Bilumix and Surgitel headlamps. He wears a headlamp at least 6 hours a day. When it is not in use, it is placed on his desk. He has to replace the battery every 4 hours. He pointed out that the weight distribution of the products causes his neck pain. Also, he mentioned that the fastener breaks too often. In addition to these problems, he said that he does not like the odor on the cushions and how it ruins his hair at the end of his day.

Major Issue

Dr. Richard Ben Simon, Enova Illumination

According to the interview with Dr. Kim, dentists use medical headlamps 8 hours a day on average. Long usage time can lead to different problem causing neck pain, discomfort, and odors. Neck pain is caused by the wrong placement of the headlamp and discomfort comes from over-pressure on the head. The form of the existing products is focused on functionality, disregarding ease of use and a friendly look. Most of the products expose the mechanism and have parts that can be minimized for a more inviting and intuitive interface. The medical headlamp is one of the medical devices that a doctor wears most of their times in their workplace.



The form of the existing products is focused on functionality, disregarding ease of use and a friendly look.

Existing Products


Form Study


Linear types had the advantage of being lightweight, simple and easy to grip but the structural integrity was not promising. It often twisted and changed shape. Also, the pressure point was not well distributed. In addition, the form did not work with people with tied hair.

Headband types had more structural integrity and distributed the weight better compared to the linear types. Also, a bigger back headband gave more comfort to the user and cantilevered the weight that’s in the front.

Weights were added to the front and the back to represent the optics, flashlight, and the battery. The left three photos have 200g of weight attached to the band and the right three photos have 100g of weight attached to the band. Each represents different scenarios. (When cameras are attached additionally it becomes heavier.). Weights were divided into two and placed in the front and the back.

According to the prior prototyping process, I learned that the ideal placement of the back headband is much lower than the front for ideal weight distribution.

Appearance Model

In order to achieve ideal weight balance, the battery pack has been moved much lower, supporting the lower back head.

Flashlight contacts the ground surface to prevent damage of the optics.

The wireless charging dock places the headlamp in an ideal position, avoiding stress on the joint.

Contact points are limited to forehead and lower back head, providing enough headroom for comfort. Cross structure gives integrity to overall form while functioning as a handle when it is being picked up. It splits into two for the users that have tied hair.


Point Arena: A modern pendant light inspired by a lighthouse in Mendocino County, California. With an upward facing light, it creates its own medallion-like pattern on the ceiling through refraction of light.

Pratt Institute New York           
Paul Kheem, Spring 2018

Lighting Design • Product Engineering

Point Arena creates a medalion-like pattern on the ceiling by refraction of light. It does not require as much material as a conventional chandelier while having the same presence. Point Arena keeps its visual weight while significantly reducing its physical weight.


Point Arena lighthouse was the first place to use a lens developed by French physicist and engineer Augustin-Jean Fresnel in the 1820s. The lens was developed to focus and project light much further without taking too much space in comparison to conventional lenses. Point Arena is an homage to this invention.




Philippe: a self-balancing desk lamp with multiple configurations, employing physics to achieve elegant movement. Every part is assembled without mechanical joinery.

Pratt Institute New York          
Paul Kheem, Spring 2018

Lighting Design • Product Engineering • Prototyping

Philippe Petit is a French high-wire artist who gained fame for his high-wire walk between the Twin Towers of the World Trade Center in New York City, on the morning of August 7, 1974.The horizontal pole that Petit used had heavyweights on the end, serving two purposes: increasing the moment of inertia of the pole and the amount of control over the net torque the tightrope walker had. Desk lamp Philippe is inspired by the physics behind tight rope walking.

Development Process

Making Process

Appearance Model

Paul Kheem Design

Brooklyn, NY.