Consumer’s Rest


Design: 1983
Production: since 1984
Manufacturer: Stiletto Studios, Berlin
Size: 94 x 73.5 x 76; seat height 45 cms
Material: varnished steel, plastic

Like Marcel Duchamp’s ready-mades, “Consumer’s Rest” is an everyday object chosen from among vast numbers of manufactured goods, reinterpreted, and invested with a new function. Stiletto, who refers to himself as a practitioner of design and has been involved in experimental graphic design and other forms of art since 1981, says of his furniture designs: “They are to have a lucid structure, fulfill their intended function in terms of length by width by height, be industrially sound, stable, and solid, serially produced. I can meet these conditions most easily when I use containers taken from the everyday consumer cycle as my starting material…. Redesign here has less to do with recycling and more with rebirth. The design is about soul and character, not ‘packaging design’.”1 Stiletto is not concerned with improving a product; instead, he simply makes use of what is available and has stood the test of time. Department stores and supermarkets but also junk yards provide plenty of ideas and material. The point of departure here is a supermarket shopping cart, a standard, ubiquitous everyday object, which hardly appears to have “design value.” Stiletto takes the shopping cart apart, reshapes it, and sprays each half with different color tones. The transparent covers are made of the thick, soft foil normally used only for industrial purposes, for example in swinging doors in warehouses. They alone ensure that the seat, armrests, and back afford a minimum of comfort, and make clear that what we are looking at is indeed for sitting. “Consumer’s Rest” and a smaller children’s version, “Short Rest,” have been manufactured by Brüder Siegel in Leipheim, Germany since 1990. PR

[1] Stiletto, Prototypen (Uitgeverij, Rotterdam: 010 Publishers, 1986).


Stiletto Consumer's Rest