ECAL Students, Playing With the Distinction Between Object and Art

An exhibition curated by an artist closely affiliated with the Fluxus movement — John M Armleder, to be exact — is sure to be liberated from traditional constraints. “More Rules for a Modern Life,” a selection of pieces by ECAL students in industrial design and fine arts that debuted last week in Milan, turns out to be just the case. Under the guidance of Christophe Guberan and Stéphane Kropf, students used their chosen materials and processes to “play with the flimsy distinctions between “objets d’art” and “practical objects,” which resulted in an explosion of varying colors and shapes of any and all materials and scale. From a child’s rocking zebra surrounded by modular lights to a handless clock set off by the shiniest hot pink backdrop, the collision of art and design is punchy and delightful.

As stated in the essay accompaniment of the exhibition — “It’s Only Furniture” by Parker Williams: “You may look at it, you may sit on it. It may be comfortable, it may be beautiful, it may be heavy, you might want to get rid of it. You may also just miss it altogether.”

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