28.4.17

The Beauty of Anonymous Design: Hidden Forms


I am so annoyed with myself for not buying a copy of Hidden Forms when I had a chance. Trust it to have gone out of print in English since. I am so ANNOYED. I often search for it. I keep my eyes peeled in every second-hand bookshop that I visit. I even hope that a digital copy might be available soon. Sadly, miserably, nothing's come up at a non "I saw you coming/rip off price" appeared.


Hidden Forms is a collaboration between Franco Clivio (director industrial design at Zurich University of the Arts), Hans Hansen (photographer) and Pierre Mendell (graphic designer). The book documents Clivio's collection of ordinary, everyday, practical, often unregarded objects collected over many years. Presented in perfect flat-lays, thoughtfully curated groups of items are accompanied by Clivio's explanations of their personal significance to him as well as some learned commentary on the manufacturing or design processes behind a selection of items. Pictures from the book can be viewed HERE

Until the day I have a copy of the book to gaze over at my leisure, I enjoy looking at Clivio's collection on the MUDAC website.

Photo credit: MUDAC

Photo credit: MUDAC

Photo credit: MUDAC

Photo credit: MUDAC

Photo credit: MUDAC
























Sulky laments aside, my failure to find a copy of Hidden Forms has put me on the path (via Google) to an aspect of design that I find fascinating. Clivio finds considered design and innovative thinking in the  'unremarkable, everyday things' that he has amassed over the years. His appreciation of anonymously designed objects has struck a chord with me piqued my curiosity enough for me to embark on a little study of my own. I hope to explore this field more in the near future on the blog.

I like Clivio's insistence that holding something in your own hand, feeling its weight and literally getting to grips with its workings is vital to any understanding of design. This hands-on way of thinking reminds me of Yanagi Sori's design principles and I feel that in this 'everything online age' it's never been more relevant or important get back to a more analogue approach to life and design.


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21.4.17

| Photo Diary | That Otherworldly Beach


Every now and then, we take our kid, grab our bags and bundle into my sister and her fiancé's car. We zoom, zoom, zoom with tunes banging, sister singing, kid wriggling and the boys map reading, towards the sea. 

The English coastline is sprinkled with seaside towns and beaches each one of them distinctive in personality. 

Dungeness is probably my favourite beach we've visited yet. Layers of salty air, wind ravaged and shingle beaten splintered wood, rusty rail tracks and sun-bleached nylon nets exhale a haunting otherworldliness that I wish I could bottle and take home to serve up on one of those particularly oppressive London living days that we all get here.

































































































Dungeness is a shingle beach that sprawls out from the looming shadows of the nearby nuclear power station. Even though we often hear the word 'bleak' used to describe the landscape of Dungeness, it is not a word that we would use ourselves. Windswept, stark, remote, fascinating, beautiful, strange, haunting, dramatic, melancholic and otherworldly are words that better match the Dungeness that we experienced.


I would like to see the sun rise and set over the expansive horizon. I want to hear what  the power station does to the sounds that travel across the shingles. How does the wind move across the landscape? Does is rush or does it dance? I will only ever know, If I stay a little longer, next time we visit. I've even found a marvellous place to stay! The Pobble House will do very nicely.

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