Last year I wrote Beautifully Wrong: Jeremy Hutchinson's Err Artwork, which highlighted a project in which the artist requested that factory workers create one useless version of the product they make every day. I found the correspondence and results entirely charming, and now I've happened upon another artist whose work makes me want to run to the hardware store...
It's Nice That featured the work of Michael DeLucia the same week that I was gushing about Hutchinson's collaboration. While It's Nice That says that DeLucia takes "industrially-produced items and gives them some sculptural integrity, making them, in effect, totally useless," I would argue that they aren't made useless (it appears the brooms could be taken back apart, and those stair rails could still be installed next to some actual stairs), but rather have been separated from their normal context so that their form can be fully appreciated. Of course, I happen to be someone who loves hardware stores and has to restrain herself from buying all sorts of things I don't need — and can't identify — simply because they're beautiful, and made of wood and metal and rubber.
Though I would probably never have (nor have space for) a piece like DeLucia's Red Shift or Reflection in my home, they are excellent reminders not to overlook the more humble objects in our homes. I don't mean I'll ever buy some beautiful, handmade, $300 broom, but I do love the look of a sturdy pushbroom and a classic Oscar The Grouch-style trashcan. And won't having a beautiful — if humble — broom make me eager to use it more often? And won't a timeless and softly gleaming — but entirely affordable — trashcan encourage me to keep it perfectly clean? The other day I saw a little old dustpan that was so pretty I was tempted to hang it on the wall. I wouldn't call it a sculpture, just an excellent chance to marvel, "Oh, what a lovely dustpan, and what a lovely world."
(Images: Michael DeLucia- there are many more great ones!- via It's Nice That)