Objectivity: A Designer's Book of Curious Tools

Objectivity: A Designer's Book of Curious Tools


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A cabinet of beguiling yet useful curiosities: the objects that get jobs done, improve domestic and working lives, and make our houses more comfortable.

If you have ever thatched a roof, measured a baby’s skull, or castrated a bull, you will recognize some of these objects. If you haven’t but admire the work of, say, Warhol, Duchamp, or Cornell, you will appreciate these accidental masterpieces of daily life.

Some tools were developed to satisfy basic human needs, some for less obvious ends, and still others are the relics of vanishing trades, yet all display a beauty and meaning beyond their function.

More than 400 objects, ancient and modern, are presented in sections that broadly characterize their use: hitting, cutting, holding, shielding, molding, spreading, gripping, rubbing, and testing. From a nineteenth-century fruit picker to Czech military food-mixing blades, from variations on the kitchen whisk to medical instruments that, thankfully, are no longer in use, there is something in these objects that will touch the inventor, designer, artist, or collector in all of us.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780500288719
Publisher: Thames & Hudson
Publication date: 05/01/2010
Pages: 192
Product dimensions: 8.10(w) x 8.10(h) x 0.70(d)

About the Author

David Usborne is a London-based architect.

Thomas Heatherwick is one of Britain’s most innovative designers.

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