written by Karen Bofinger
Birkhauser Verlag AG | ISBN 9783034607223
Paperback – 152 pages
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Lace-up shoes with the likeness of Barack Obama, a lighter that shows an airplane about to collide with the Twin Towers, plush slippers shaped like penises: the world of commodities today is marked by stylistic diversity, irony, and trash - there are no limits on so-called bad taste. Inspired by the exhibitions at the Werkbund-archiv - Museum der Dinge in Berlin and now at the Gewerbemuseum Winterthur, this book attempts to get to the bottom of the current fascination with the ugly, the grotesque, the provocative, and the non-functional. Products from the most disparate realms are juxtaposed on facing pages. The result is confrontations that are sometimes surprising, with a fascination all their own. Introductory essays by prominent authors shed additional light on wide-ranging aspects of design, morality, and irony. It is not just tasteless items that are placed under the microscope; useless and politically incorrect ones have their place in this volume as well.