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ADIEU: Fireplace 'logs' for the ardent modernist

Bruce M. Tharp

Faculty
Inspired by the invective writings of Adolf Loos—e.g., “Ornament and Crime”—and his concerns for the economic and moral detriments of ornamentation, Adieu is a set of eight porcelain furniture legs from bygone eras. Cast from actual wooden chair components, they are to be placed in gas or conventional fireplaces; for the ardent modernist, these “logs” offer a torrid farewell to our stylistic pasts.

While their placement in the fireplace symbolizes their rejection and destruction, they themselves are of durable ceramic; they resist and persist. They are a tricky form of contemporary ornamentation–one that scorns ornamentation itself, or at least previous promulgations. Acknowledging the complexity of aesthetics and cultures of taste, Adieu embraces its own irony—serving as the modernist's anti-decoration decoration.