Monday, March 9, 2009

Do Engineers Make Good Modernists?

A new development in branding, the cunning slight of hand.  Pilgrim Modern furniture from our forefathers of the Bay Colony?  And exclusively.  Mullioned door window and Georgian door handle.  Come'on guys, you're engineers, where's that attention to detail?  Maybe if they sold vintage Shaker furniture, which one could argue fits almost all of the tenets of modern, or, they dealt in Paul McCobb's 'Predictor' line of 1951 that was inspired by Shaker furniture, then, and maybe then, could I fathom Colony House.  And the copyrighter the magazine assigned to write the text.  I can just see him needing to stop " for one or two" on the way home, turning to a stranger at the bar, starting in with "How was your day, mine not so good.  I'm a bull shit hack but it's a living.  What ya drinking?  Click on the image and read the caption below the exterior photo."  It says, "... at right is new section...".  Ya, the windowless stucco clad box grafted on to the clapboard main structure with angles that do not even mate.  Nice!  Then there is the caption below the interior shot.  "Spacious modern display..."  Gag.   "... a mecca"  Ya, right!  "... for those who seek 'real' help..."  Is there unreal help?  The blind leading the blind?  You may need real help AFTER leaving there.  I can see them pitching what looks like a Saarinen 'Womb' chair as a 'birthing chair', adding as the final sales pitch that Knoll fabric is institutional grade and easily cleaned.  But wait, there's more.  Check out the caption of the engineer owners, sans pocket protectors.  Mr. Rubin looks like William H. Macy as the car salesman in Fargo.  Fitting!  And the final quote, or is it the final farce, I get confused.  "...decided to apply (read mechanically) their technical knowledge (the per square inch pressure exerted on a section of floor by a 365 pound man leaning back in an Eames DCW) of modern design to the selling of modern furniture".  Huh?  Technical knowledge?  Does that mean chair A has 23% more fabric choices than chair B?  What happened to aesthetics, the prospect of a new and improved future through modern living, the promise of a good life through modernity, or just plain "look at the integrity of this clean, unadulter'd beauty"  Ya, one either gets it or they don't.  I think I'll go find that writer and buy him a drink. 

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