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The mischief of design

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There are those who claim that design and shaping is art. If it is, then the art is to seduce. To seduce to sit on an impractical and uncomfortable chair purely because it looks nice. Thus, by now, all household appliances and furnishings have been elevated to "art" with which you can achieve "self-expression" and with which you quickly walk out of fashion. An apparently sophisticated, but in fact extremely simple commercial ploy.

The same with packaging that serves to purchase food items. In which it is not at all certain whether attractive-looking packaging is to disguise the fact that the food items are in reality inedible, or the food items are given along as consolation to endure the unsightly packaging. In clothing fashion, I understand that seasonal clothing sales now have 52 seasons.

Incidentally, it is not an argument in favor of pragmatism, where quality and aesthetics should play no role. That be far! Perhaps it is even an ode to Craftsmanship, for which I have great admiration. For me it is not about what for sale, but what it sells. Or, as they used to say: you don't judge a book by its cover.

Thus, art that knew how to tell something about reality has been relegated to the art of commerce: design. Which I do not wish to call art at all.

Because while reading this piece, a friend said to me 'would punch me in the mouth if he didn't know me' it is appropriate here to point out that there is an ironic tone at play and it is also paradoxical: I like beautiful things. Architecture, music, art. So it is, on the one hand, a cry from my disgust regarding the commercialization of the world. Yes the world. Everything seems to be for sale, nothing is sacred.

On the other hand, it is a call for true aesthetics, for true Art, for craftsmanship. I love in this respect Of course of design and design. Even the world is designed and I love the Designer. So I also really love the designer. Hopefully this clears the air to such an extent that I can continue to move freely down the street.


Erwin de Ruiter

"One man tries to express himself in books, another in boots; both are likely to fail." - G.K. Chesterton

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