Saturday, 16 June 2007
artek's vintage revenge
Maybe it's a concern with sustainability, preserving resources, re-using and re-cycling. Maybe it's a degree of ennui with the eternally new. Or maybe it's just that easy catch-all cultural diagnosis: the zeitgeist. (Or even, maybe, the subtle drift of my own interests which brings some things into sharper focus, regardless of their actual relevance). But there has been a steady buildup of interest in vintage design pieces - 20th century high-design furniture and objects which are currently changing hands for astronomical sums of money at international auction houses.
I've been following the vintage scene for a few months now, but Artek's latest contribution to it seems to be of a different nature altogether. Last April, Artek launched a project called 2nd Cycle, foraging around for vintage Artek pieces in Finland's hospitals, schools, factories and flea markets, and hoarding them in their warehouses. What they're planning to do with them is anybody's guess. Their website has a truly lovely selection of individual objects' life-stories and some wonderful pictures. I can feel a hefty profit in the making, though, if not a full-blown worldwide vintage design craze. Uber-hip-man Tyler Brule's new glossy Monocle publishes a filmed interview with Artek's creative director Tom Dixon in its online edition. Dixon waxes lyrical about patina. I can only agree. The purpose of this blog being drifting, and therefore not long-drawn critical analysis, I leave you to ponder the implications of this latest design development.