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May 14, 2005 12:14 PM   Subscribe

Inhabitat - "source on the future of design". Great finds like Tetris shelves, the Slumber Light, a transformer apartment, and Favela Chairs. (via the saucydwellings LJ community)
posted by Melinika (43 comments total)

 
Those Tetris shelves are one of the coolest things I've ever seen. But in the game your blocks don't cost $350 each.

And wouldn't it be hilarious if you were ordering all these shapes and they came one at a time, and the long straight 4-block, which you needed to set up your configuration, won't come until the absolute last minute, just like real life Tetris?

And for those of you craving lines, java tetris.
posted by BlackLeotardFront at 12:36 PM on May 14, 2005


Ooooo! Teddy bear chairs. Very nice.
posted by dopeypanda at 12:50 PM on May 14, 2005


I WANT THOSE SHELVES
posted by fire&wings at 1:08 PM on May 14, 2005


I want the bed/desk/shelves. It'd be like living in a house designed by Q.
posted by cali at 1:19 PM on May 14, 2005


Yes. those shelves are perfect.
Must...resist...temptation...to...buy...or...tinker...
posted by mystyk at 1:20 PM on May 14, 2005


Wow, who'd have thought wretched excess and tetris could go together so well.
posted by Space Coyote at 1:26 PM on May 14, 2005


Concerning the apartment:

The very small 2 BR apartments (both about 600 sq ft each) are priced at roughly $1,350 a square foot.

that's $810,000. It may be cool, but why bother. It costs $810,000. And I love the "guestroom" hidden in the wall. In my apartment I call that a closet.

Cool links though.
posted by elwoodwiles at 1:34 PM on May 14, 2005


I want the bed/desk/shelves.

Wait, lemme get this straight. You'd have to take everything off your shelves and desk every night before you could go to bed? Or am I missing a magic step somewhere?...
posted by nebulawindphone at 1:40 PM on May 14, 2005


I'm guessing the shelves are decorative? Like stuff is nailed/glued to the shelves? Anyway it still looks neat though I'd probably be working on something on the desk and end up sleeping on the floor because I was too lazy to clean up.
posted by bobo123 at 1:52 PM on May 14, 2005


The stuffed animal chairs on that site are winsome, but $11,350?
posted by BoundlessJoy at 1:59 PM on May 14, 2005


That's why I hate murphy beds, or futons that fold out - I know I would never clean up enough to get them out. I lived for three years with a futon that was either out permanently, or stuck as a loveseat that I slept on.

Now loft beds - those are amazing. Not only do you get more space, but you get to sleep up high. It's like having a bunk bed without the bother of a bottom bunk.

We will need to be all thinking about how to live in smaller and smaller spaces.

But for the tetris blocks - neat shelves, but I think I would have put them together with spaces inbetween, like a bad game of tetris - that way you would have all the more shelving. I know someone who made amazing shelves from wooded wine crates by arranging them offset, creating interesting shelves with a variety of spaces.
posted by jb at 2:06 PM on May 14, 2005


I saw the tetris shelves a few days ago and already spoke to our family's carpenter about having him custom-make some for my room. Let me assure you that they don't cost 350 dollars each. A ludicrous price like that insults the idea behind it.
posted by BuddhaInABucket at 2:35 PM on May 14, 2005


Yeah, saw those tetris shelves via bb this morning. I am so cobbling up a custom-sized set to accomodate my TV/stereo/CDs/DVDs.
posted by PurplePorpoise at 2:43 PM on May 14, 2005


Ditto... I was looking around to see what I'd need to make those tetris shelves, yesterday. (Apart from skill, that is. )
posted by cell at 2:46 PM on May 14, 2005


Wow, I'm really in love with the idea of networked light communication devices like the Slumber Light and Fireflies.
posted by thebabelfish at 2:49 PM on May 14, 2005


Shelves:
The ten-piece set shown above is $6790.

Ya know it'd be a lot freaking cheaper to just spend the money and learn to make them yourself.
posted by MrLint at 3:03 PM on May 14, 2005


Wow, I should hire a carpenter to build shelves like that and save myself a huge chunk of change. Hell, build a couple extra sets for friends while I'm at it.
posted by fleener at 3:27 PM on May 14, 2005


Heh--from the comment section of the Tetris shelves page:

The price may seem more reasonable when you consider how much trouble it must be to store the stock pieces. Because if they were to store them the wrong way so as to make a full horizontal line the pieces would, of course, instantly disappear. Hence the expense.
posted by LarryC at 3:53 PM on May 14, 2005


I just love the concept of a $3,000 chair built in the style of a shantytown.
posted by mosch at 4:12 PM on May 14, 2005


I really like the slumber light, though my husband thinks it's creepy. (It sort of is, I'll grant him that.) I would have loved to have something like that in the days when we had a long distance relationship to end the constant wondering of "Ok, so it's eight here... and 1 in the morning there... can I call or is he asleep?"

Then again, knowing my luck, he would have passed out on the couch and not the bed and rendered the whole thing moot.
posted by grapefruitmoon at 4:17 PM on May 14, 2005


$350 a block. Insane. I can't see how they're worth more then $10 a pop other then the materials cost Which shouldn't be much unless they're using mahogany or something. And even then, $350!?
posted by delmoi at 4:17 PM on May 14, 2005


If this is the future, it appears we're all going to be either very rich, or homeless.
posted by BoringPostcards at 4:19 PM on May 14, 2005


Another excellent source for things of this nature is MoCoLoco. If I had any money that site would have cost me a fortune by now.
posted by Gamecat at 4:25 PM on May 14, 2005


I want the bed/desk/shelves.

Wait, lemme get this straight. You'd have to take everything off your shelves and desk every night before you could go to bed? Or am I missing a magic step somewhere?...
posted by nebulawindphone at 1:40 PM PST on May 14 [!]


Superglue!
posted by Balisong at 6:13 PM on May 14, 2005


Dude. Translucent Concrete. Awesome.
posted by exlotuseater at 6:14 PM on May 14, 2005


The tetris shelves are cool, I think i may have found the project to practice my dovetailing.

To all the pricing naysayers: it's art. you kind of sound like someone bitching that the Mona Lisa should only be worth what you could pay a painter to copy it.
posted by Mitheral at 7:26 PM on May 14, 2005


1X10 finishing wood, base to mitred square box shapes does not equal fine art, or even fine art copies.
Fun, practical, and digital-esque, sure, but not fine art.

Transluscent concrete is awesome, tho..
posted by Balisong at 7:36 PM on May 14, 2005


To all the pricing naysayers: it's art. you kind of sound like someone bitching that the Mona Lisa should only be worth what you could pay a painter to copy it.

Emulating a fucking computer game is NOT art.
posted by c13 at 9:40 PM on May 14, 2005


It is with wood.
posted by BlackLeotardFront at 10:16 PM on May 14, 2005


This reminds me of Bulgakov's "Dog's heart"

'So I can eat in the bedroom,' he said in a slightly muffled voice,
'read in the consulting-room, dress in the hall, operate in the maid's room
and examine patients in the dining-room. I expect that is what Isadora
Duncan does. Perhaps she eats in her study and dissects rabbits in the
bathroom. Perhaps. But I'm not Isadora Duncan. . . !' he turned yellow. 'I
shall eat in the dining-room and operate in the operating theatre! Tell that
to the general meeting, and meanwhile kindly go and mind your own business
and allow me to have my supper in the place where all normal people eat. I
mean in the dining-room - not in the hall and not in the nursery.'


Except even he could not imagine paying $900K for a 2bd apartment and $6k for a crappy bookshelf or a chair made out of Brazilian garbage.

Suckers...
posted by c13 at 11:05 PM on May 14, 2005


Balisong: 1X10 finishing wood, base to mitred square box shapes does not equal fine art, or even fine art copies. Fun, practical, and digital-esque, sure, but not fine art.

You'd think wouldn't ya. I've come to the conclusion that I don't know what "art" is. I came to this conclusion back in 1990 when the National Gallery of Canada spent 1.8 million on three vertical stripes on a 18 feet high by 8 feet wide canvas. The people who spend that kind of money on something you can whip up with a roller in an afternoon are the kind that would pay several hundred dollars for a faux tetris block.
posted by Mitheral at 11:46 PM on May 14, 2005


Mitheral : something you can whip up with a roller in an afternoon.

Do you have the same opinion about Rothko? Just curious. A lot of people I know seem to miss the point of color block paintings like this which is that while the blocks appear to be one solid color at first (something you could do with a roller), closer inspection reveals that they are actually layers upon layers of color which were applied to give a flat overall effect. You really have to see them in person to really see it, but I can tell on this image that you linked that this isn't flat color, nor could you do this with a roller in an afternoon. If you notice, the colors are darker and heavier at the bottom and lighter at the top.

Whether or not you think that this is as "arty" as a Van Gogh, that's a matter of opinion. I just wanted to point out that a lot of work goes into making something seem as simple as this and it can't just be done "in an afternoon."

As for the actual topic at hand, the Tetris shelves, I have no opinion. Interactive domestic sculpture isn't really my speciality.
posted by grapefruitmoon at 5:52 AM on May 15, 2005


Please, lets not go down the 'value of art vs. price of art' plug hole.
posted by blindsam at 6:53 AM on May 15, 2005


Agree totally grapefruitmoon, that was my original point when I said that the price doesn't reflect the expenses of making the tetris piece but instead the hoped value of the art piece. I don't know enough about either the painting or the shelves genera to make an informed judgement of the value of either. Ultimately art is worth what people will pay for it whether it's the statue of David or Elvis on velvet.
posted by Mitheral at 8:01 AM on May 15, 2005


I have an honest question, sort of on topic:

How do you (everybody, especially the "art-inclined") feel about seeing these things (i.e. Tetris Shelves), choosing not to buy them, and then trying to reproduce them in a cheaper manner?

I have heard some artists say that they consider that "stealing".

For my old job, I used to go to the New York Gift Show every year, and I loved the stuff in their "Accent on Design" section, but it was prohibitively expensive. So I took their ideas and expanded upon them, and now I have some cool furniture.

I mean really, ~11k for a stuffed animal chair?

I don't want to go down the plug hole, I just want to poke around the edges.
posted by exlotuseater at 8:01 AM on May 15, 2005


There was a thread in my knife forums where there was a guy who made up some titanium chopsticks, with filework on the ends. He was a knife maker, and was charging $80-100 for them. Along comes someone else, who saw the "idea" and made a bunch of sets and sold them for $45.
The titanium bar costs about $10-15 and the work involved was minimal.

They got into a great big stink over this, with most people siding on the side of the original knifemaker, saying the other "copycat" was a jerk who couldn't come up with his own ideas.

How much creative leeway is there between two sets of titanium chopsticks?

I say if you make it yourself, you are the artist. What you come up with will either be of better or worse quality that the advertised ones, depending on what you want.

If you painted the blocks the respective game colors, are you stealing ideas from Tetris (tm) AND this "artist"?
Or is it your own art?
posted by Balisong at 8:54 AM on May 15, 2005


How do you (everybody, especially the "art-inclined") feel about seeing these things (i.e. Tetris Shelves), choosing not to buy them, and then trying to reproduce them in a cheaper manner?
I have heard some artists say that they consider that "stealing".

Look at it this way: they stole the idea of a "shelf", namely "a flat length of wood or rigid material, attached to a wall or forming a part of a piece of furniture, that provides a surface for storage or display of objects ". And they stole the shapes from a computer game.
Furthermore, discounting the limited functionality (which, apparently, stopped being the point of a shelf long time ago for these people), they aren't very original and, therefore, this thing makes a pretty bad example of "art". And the fact that they have a pretty cool loking website, or that they charge some insane amount of money for it (the shelf) does not change things.
They have also stole someone's idea that putting a pricetag that is completely disconnected with reality on a thing will trick people into thinking more highly of the item.
posted by c13 at 9:30 AM on May 15, 2005


As far as block paintings go, there is a reason why most people mix the pigments to acheive the appropriate color FIRST and THEN apply the paint.

But that's probably why I'm not an artist...
posted by c13 at 9:36 AM on May 15, 2005


A furry's dream chair, made of plushies all bound together.

Bet it's a bitch cleaning organic stains out of, though.
posted by orthogonality at 9:24 PM on May 15, 2005


exlotuseater writes "I have heard some artists say that they consider that 'stealing'.

If a concept is truly novel, the artists should get a patent.

But art's as much in the execution as in the concept. Da Vinci didn't consider portraiture his personal property, but there's a reason no one wants orthogonality's "Mona Lisa": Da Vinci's execution his command of the artistry, far outstrips mine.

(But what about the first guys to do perspective drawing? Probably initially considered a trade secret?)

On the other hand, if I can execute the concept as well as the original artist, by following mechanically a set of instructions, that's evidence it's not "high art".

But what about an architect's revolutionary design, as captured in blueprints? I'd liken the builder following the blueprints to a pianist following a composer's score, or a type-compositor setting a book in print: when an accurate reproduction can be made according to set directions that are evident in the artist's final product, it's a different sort of art, the sort that is protected by copyright. A blueprint, a musical score, a book: all can be reproduced by "merely competent" technicians by a mechanical series of actions, actions inherent in the "art work" itself: a builder reads a blueprint or makes one from an existing structure, a pianist reads a score or reproduces it by listening to the music, a printer (the human kind) reads a manuscript and produces a book.

All these are as opposed to a semi-accurate reproduction photo of an oil painting, which captures the colors but not the texture of the brush-strokes or the three-dimensional globs of paint. The "directions" to make an oil painting are not inherent in the final product, it's not clear what layered brush-strokes produced the actual painting.
posted by orthogonality at 9:41 PM on May 15, 2005


What about the modern artists that don't actually make anything themselves? A number of modern artists design their work but use 'fabricators' to actually build them (and in many cases even work out the designs and logistics). We still currently classify these people as artists. If we outsource the actual creation of the work, how am I as someone following the vague directions of an artist (make tetris-block hollow shapes) any different from their in-house fabricators?
posted by flameproof at 4:29 AM on May 16, 2005


As far as I'm concerned, in the sense you speak of, "fabricated" art = "fabricated" artistry.
posted by stenseng at 4:16 PM on May 16, 2005


Like the orange scarf 'Gateway' project in NYC. That was something that you would need an artist to come up with the concept, and maybe the layout.
But it's gonna be workers wrenching together the prefab-imported-from-Taiwan gates, and Chineese children sewing the fabric swatches.

Still, a piece of art, even if one guy with a concept get's most of the credit.
posted by Balisong at 9:35 PM on May 16, 2005


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