April 19, 2009
Things: (Re)Statement of Purpose
I really love this elegant digression inserted in one of things magazine’s periodic collections of smartly-chosen links:
We used to notice slight spikes in traffic when we led with an image, but these seem to have tailed off (as has traffic in general). Things will always be about physical things but the role of text and analysis has and always will be central to the publication (although readers might have noticed that the physical publication itself has been in an extremely long stretch of self-imposed limbo). As talk of design, objects and collections shifts from the linguistic to the strictly visual, it seems ever more important to write about objects and the role they play in contemporary life — and, by definition, the role that collecting and collections play as well — rather than simply add to the ever-growing museum that is the internet. It seems increasingly clear to us that things’ role is not one of curator, but guide.
In one sense — and it’s a particularly narrow one — the change we are undergoing is one of “dematerialization” — but in another and (I think) more profound sense, what’s happening is that materiality and physicality are changing, becoming something else. I’m happy that things is around, in whatever format, to help document that.