(here follows some badly written but hopefully interesting thinking spawned by this article.)
I wonder if the key is that by allowing the digital image to appear as real and specifically old, it becomes imbued with an inherent value which is associated with effort and specifically time. On the one hand this desire to obtain and own things which contain ‘time-value’ could be seen as an anchor against the fast moving and changing world we live in now. It could also be, (and this is where my pop sci-cology kicks in) that we are scared of death- time is running out and if we can somehow possess, and therefore control time, we can keep it away for that bit longer. Or perhaps, more accuratley, by getting hold of stuff with embued ‘time-value’ we can be seen to be adding gravitas to our own legacy, by extending the perception of our timescale (period we have covered with our life) we can be seen to be more successful or better remembered when we do die.
There is another aspect here- not just to do with faux-vintage, but things with a patina of age (a beautifully rusted garage door, or a worn piece of wooden type). Second hand objects in general (some more than others of course) can be seen to be carriers of ‘time-value’ but the way this value is traded is is stories and narrative. The objects acquired at a junk market have had a life of their own before I get hold of them and by purchasing them (and here real currency plays little role in time, It could have be expensive or cheap the effect is the same) I acquire their unknown story, narrative and history with it. In that way the buyer can feel like they are acquiring time.
“I am for messy vitality over obvious unity. I include the non-sequitur and proclaim the duality. I am for richness of meaning rather than clarity of meaning; for the implicit function as well as the explicit function. I prefer ‘both-and’ to ‘either-or’, black and white, and sometimes gray, to black or white.”
pg 67: Samson by Chris Burden is a piece of art that pushes apart the gallery it’s in as visitors enter through a turnstile.
pg 138: This is Gipsoteca Canoviana in Possagno, Italy. A building designed by Carlo Scarpa which houses the working plaster models for sculptures. The space is a very simple cube but has the corners removed and skylights/windows (Scarpa described them as ‘fragments of sky’) installed instead. I really like this deconstruction/dismantling of the gallery space.
pg 151: The Museum of Unlimited Growth was designed by Le Corbusier in 1939. It attempts to solve the problem of a museum building which has an expanding collection (as most museums do). Visitors are directed through a channel in one side and arrive in the centre of the spiral structure from where they can explore the galleries and rooms. The museum can be expanding by adding more spiral over time. I love the idea of a never ending museum- a continuing process. Or even better one which is both complete (it is a complete building) and in process at the same time (it can be added to when needed).
This design kind of sums up everything I hate about bad design in the naughties.
1. It’s totally meaningless, devoid of any added value.
2. It’s essentially a style that’s been ripped off. Hugely derivative of something (probably from Ive) that was once good and then expanded and bastardised to death.
3. It triggers more poor imitations, and leads design buyers to say things like “I want it like they did it”.
4. Everyone blindly buys one because everyone else has bought one. No one actually stops to think, do I like this?
5. It’s so damn ugly and intrusive. Sat in the corner of your lounge looking shit.
Picked this up free in a newsagents in Shoreditch- was really struck at how good it was- I particularly like the illustrated fashion/object page- can’t afford the ‘in’ things- don’t worry just draw them- and also really liked the projecting onto the fashion model- lovely stuff. The people involved can be found here…….. & here……..
I recently read this great article over on Design Assembly about brutalist/70′s/modernist/ugly architecture. It seems very hit and miss to me as to whether this type of building works- as the article says the Southbank Centre and Hayward etc. was criticised to fuck but now with a revamp- it’s one of my favourite buildings in London. And again Trellick Tower round the corner from Portabello Road Markets is stunning to look at but I’m not sure I’d want to live there- not so however with the Barbican buildings- I love them, it feels like a hidden architectural paradise in the middle of the city; it’s so quite especially if you go to the sort of little green house part- they have fish and tropical plants and it’s a great place to eat your lunch. Read the article, see the pictures.
Was handed this book by Matt Wade of Kin after a short conversation on the 80- 20 split of time at work (eighty per cent doing ‘real’ work and the other twenty on self initiated or side projects.) The book talks about that stuff but goes more into epidemics and trends and why things may or not happen. I found two sections of particular interest: the chapters about context and the environments effects on us. The example given was graffiti covered train carriages being a breading ground for crime but that a nice one isn’t so much. And went on to talk about how a person might be said to be gentle or generous, but that this was not true in all situations and that everyone’s attributes are entirely contextual and that human character isn’t quite what we perceive it to be- i.e. not stable or as polar as we think. The other cool but was one of the main concerns f the book as to the types of people involved in an epidemic- connectors, mavens (people who collect and distribute information) and salesmen- I thought it was interesting to analyse why trends and particularly messages get communicated effectively (or not) and to what extent the sort of science behind these things can be applied to help a communication of one sort or another get across. I think it’s a valuable resource book and super quick to read (it’s written that way- lots of repetition etc.) but worth a read if you’re stuck for lit.
I think it’s one of those books that is well researched so they feel they’ve got to get it all down (and the repetition does grate a little after a bit) but that maybe a sort of bullet point version would be a more useful thing. A super quick glance would refresh you and you can remember all the examples that were given. Oh hang on- link: wikipedia someone kinda did that. give that a read then. yeah?.