No Name Design at the Triennale Design Museum

The collecting of anonymous objects — and the subsequent use of those objects in creating a perfectly styled interior — has become such a staple of modern life that it’s hard to remember a time when not everyone loaded up their vans twice a year at places like Brimfield. But Franco Clivio, a former industrial designer and a lecturer at Zurich’s Schule für Gestaltung, has been amassing such objects for more than four decades. His collection — which numbers into the thousands — is on view starting next week at Milan’s Triennale Design Museum in an exhibition called “No Name Design.” Wooden shoe molds, metal springs, seafoam sponges, pilot goggles, potato brushers, carpet beaters, cheese graters, pickaxes, staplers, leather-covered baseballs, crystals, mercury thermometers — Clivio has arranged these items and more, which he chooses for their usefulness as well as for their simple aesthetic appeal, by function, type, material, or form. “These objects, often anonymously designed, pay homage to the ingenuity of craftsmen and engineers who provided solutions to a variety of problems,” Clivio writes in the exhibition notes. The idea is nothing new — the exhibition calls to mind things like Jasper Morrison’s Super Normal — but is distinguished by the vastness of its collection and the absolute perfectness of its accompanying images, which we’re sharing with you today. On view from June 19 to September 14.
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