31 October 2008

The Lovely Omnipresence of Modern Design

or, further reason to love Europe.
or, a beautiful marriage of culture and package design.
or, just plain-old fangirling.

Yesterday, I had to buy a lightbulb. Here's the box:
Nice, clean sans-serif font, the extreme localization with 27 languages, made in France by a German company and on recycled cardboard -- nothing special, right?

But wait! There's more!
My love for things Bauhaus tends to know no bounds. It excites me in MoMA design exhibits, it makes me forgive Breuer's Whitney (which in general I love to hate), it put me near ecstasy in at the Pompidou and in Barcelona... So it always makes my heart sing when I see the influence of a movement that arguably was peripheral at the time though has since accomplished its objective of mass-producable, well-designed, functional products to the extent that people don't even think about it any more. Ikea? Not so avant-garde!

So, the detail on the box, with its rather generic scenes of living space that are no more than an inch high on the box, is kind of interesting. Why? Because we're looking at what's basically a Breuer chair and a van der Rohe coffee table!

Yay for the simple beauty of tubular steel! And hurrah that good design has reached the masses to the extent that now it's part of our visual culture!!

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