But I think there’s been a backlash against mass production and the identikit IKEA-furnished interiors of the 90s – we now seem to be moving into a culture of individuality and mass customisation instead. Look at the resilience of the craft sector during the current recession (see highlights of recent report from the Crafts Council). And taking that even further; the trend for ‘hacking;’ in which users are getting involved in the design process.
Designboom.com has some great examples on their site and says; “hacking refers to the act of modifying or customising everyday products to improve their functionality, repurpose them or just for fun. Product hacking isn’t new either, in fact this practice is a basic expression of human ingenuity. Anyone who has tinkered with their telephone or turned an old chair into something else is a product hacker”
My favourite example is Martino Gamper; the ultimate hacker to my mind. He makes some beautiful pieces that really challenge the way you think about everyday objects. This is a film he made for the Design Museum; “Confronting the Chair.”