Industrial Facility 07.07.10

scissors rt

We asked Sam Hecht and Kim Colin - Industrial Facility - to delve into their collection of cheap things. In the latest in the series, they (carefully) pull out a combination of two dangerous tools

As the Under a Fiver collection has grown over the years, one recurring theme has been objects that share two functions. Most of the objects are nonsense, where the dubious merits of either function are little more than a marketing trick. Some are included in the collection not because they are examples of good design, but more because they reflect what people think other people need. These items often look promising when you first see them but then fail to deliver because one of the functions jeopardises the other. But the "knife scissors" takes this idea of duality to a whole new level because it combines two potentially lethal objects – a knife and a pair of scissors, things that we're always told to be careful of.

Not to over-exaggerate the safety of one or the other, but when you compare it to some of the other dual function objects in the collection – a washing glove with sponge, or a watering can with sprayer – "knife scissors" is odd in both the way it looks and what it represents. Do you really save much space by having one object instead of two?

Does it cut paper? Well yes, just about, but what you are cutting is hidden by the bulk of the knife. Does it slice? Yes, but a little uncomfortably. However, the functional success is a little inconsequential here. The bigger question is why there continues to be a desire to search for something new in objects so basic as a knife or a pair of scissors. Why must the oscillation between desire and boredom, as Freud famously put it, apply itself to such 
menial objects as this, we wonder. In fact "knife scissors" is a wonder.

www.industrialfacility.co.uk

 

Words

Sam Hecht and Kim Colin

quotes story

Most of the objects are nonsense, where the dubious merits of either function are little more than a marketing trick

Leave a comment

Click to show