USELESS: Provocation #10

Useless! What a perfect topic for someone like me, who for years have been proposing things without function to an incredulous market! When we made Buildings of Disaster, souvenirs devoted to architectural sites of human tragedy, we’ve emphasized that they were objects of design, not sculptures.

“But what is their function, how do they work?” To answer these doubts, early on I coined the expression “fuzzy function”. It is fuzzy because it is unclear. Surely you would not use them to hammer nails into a wall. Our objects were made to fulfill an immaterial need, to become metaphysical containers where the owners could put in their own meanings and emotions.

Fourteen years later, thousands of these miniatures have been sold, coveted by collectors and owned by museums. Somewhere along the way, people have warmed up to the idea that the very notion of function may need to be re-defined.

Constantin Boym