Things Come Apart: A Teardown Manual for Modern Living

Overview

Inspiring and unique photographs capture mechanical and electronic objects of past and present in a dismantled, meticulously arranged form
Welcome to Todd McLellan’s unique photographic vision of the material world: fifty design classics—arranged first by size and then by intricacy—are beautifully displayed, piece by piece, exploding in midair and dissected in real-time, frame-by-frame video stills.
This book makes visible the inner workings of...
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Overview

Inspiring and unique photographs capture mechanical and electronic objects of past and present in a dismantled, meticulously arranged form
Welcome to Todd McLellan’s unique photographic vision of the material world: fifty design classics—arranged first by size and then by intricacy—are beautifully displayed, piece by piece, exploding in midair and dissected in real-time, frame-by-frame video stills.
This book makes visible the inner workings of some of the world’s most iconic designs. From SLR camera to mantel clock to espresso machine, from iPad to bicycle to grand piano, every single component of each object is revealed. These disassembled objects show that even the most intricate of modern technologies can be broken down and understood, while beautifully illustrating the quality and elegance of older designs. Stunning photography is interspersed with essays by notable figures from the worlds of restoration, DIY, and design innovation who discuss historical examples of teardowns, disassembly, and reverse-engineering.
Each photograph is itself a work of art and offers a reinterpretation of our familiar world. They connect people with the child-like joy of taking something apart to see how it works and will appeal to anyone with a curiosity about the material world.
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Editorial Reviews

From Barnes & Noble

On his website, photographer Todd McLellan asserts that his interest in changing things artistically first germinated in kindergarten finger-painting class. From that small-fingered messy beginning came an apparently insatiable interest in the inner workings of things. In this meticulous "teardown manual," he blows up or disassembles clocks, bicycles, grand pianos, lawnmowers, kitchen appliances, telephones, sound systems, and some things we have to admit seem complete unidentifiable. Things Come Apart is guaranteed to make you rethink and enjoy your relationship with all the mechanisms that keep us busy and diverted. Editor's recommendation.

Publishers Weekly
A geeky adoration of design, disassembly, and tinkering, this collection of photographs and brief es-says draws attention to the aesthetic and practical value of taking objects apart. McLellan's process is straightforward—50 familiar objects are presented in their disassembled states, both arranged in an artful splay that highlights every component of the design, then more chaotically staged in a "drop," falling in front of the camera frame in groups before being digitally layered into one image. The ob-jects cover a range of simplicity and complexity, and of contemporary and classic, including the ele-gant straightforwardness of a mechanical pen, the staggering intricacy of a 1960s typewriter, and the miniscule technology of a modern laptop. The accompanying essays offer glancing (if occasionally trite) praise of disassembly, both for the childlike joy of mechanical experimentation and for the prac-tical environmental and material worth inherent in more accessible design. While a few clear argu-ments are made in favor of Active Disassembly technology and against disposable culture, the book as a whole functions as a celebration rather than a polemic, the photographic project of disassembly able to draw out a sense of wonder from within objects otherwise made familiar and artless by everyday use. Color illustrations. (May)
The Huffington Post
“A new book full of gorgeous and meticulously organized photographs of old school and modern tech broken down and laid bare.”
From the Publisher
“A geeky adoration of design, disassembly, and tinkering.”
Wired.com
“The photos are enjoyable as pure eye candy, but they also illustrate the history of modern manufacturing.”
The New York Times Book Review
“. . . 50 disassembled classics of mechanical and electronic design, with the components first arrayed in formal order and then in midair freefall.”
NPR Picture Show
“McLellan’s photographs seek to challenge our disposable culture by making transparent all the things that we regularly throw away.”
Florida Weekly
“Fifty objects and 21,959 components later, Mr. McLellan is still disassembling objects.”
FrontiersLA.com
“This fascinating book showcases unique photos of 50 design classics in a dismantled, meticulously rearranged form—including an iPad, grand piano and an espresso machine.”
Woman Around Town
“Truly unique.”
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780500516768
  • Publisher: Thames & Hudson
  • Publication date: 5/31/2013
  • Pages: 128
  • Sales rank: 182,848
  • Product dimensions: 9.70 (w) x 13.40 (h) x 0.70 (d)

Meet the Author

Todd McLellan is a Toronto-based photographer who specializes in automotive, commercial, and conceptual work.
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