DISARMING DESIGN FROM PALESTINE X MACGUFFIN
In 2020 MacGuffin teamed up with emerging designers from Palestine and filmmaker Alexandre Humbert to investigate the production, use and meaning of rugs in Palestine. The project portrayed the complexities and modern-day realities of the Palestinian diaspora — bringing together previously unheard voices and giving them resonance. Rugs and carpets are staged as witnesses of personal histories that take place under the surface of mainstream narratives. The research was presented in the form of a series of short movies in Birzeit and Amsterdam.
Photos: Rawan Bazbazat, Khalid Ladadwah, Lara Salous
XML ARCHITECTS X MACGUFFIN
Talk Show Typologies
MU & Design Academy, Eindhoven, 2019 - 2020
In the industry of manufacturing public opinion in 24-hour news cycles, the talk show is the engine room and the talk show desk the engine block. What constitutes the space of the talk show? In MacGuffin Magazine Nº 8, a presentation at MU and a workshop at the Design Academy Eindhoven, MacGuffin and XML Architects analyse the architecture of talk shows, providing insight into their inner dynamics as vessels for collective imagination and public opinion.
Photos XML, Boudewijn Bollmann
ALEXANDRE HUMBERT X MACGUFFIN
The Rug - Host of Imagination
Design Academy Eindhoven, 2020
In 1967, Michel Foucault defined the concept of Heterotopia, the idea that a physical object can host imagination. In 2020, nineteen students from the Design Academy Eindhoven used the context of confinement to explore their rugs. Their rooms — in Brooklyn, London, Ljubljana, Paris, Boyle, Prague and Eindhoven — became their film sets, their phones became their cameras, and the constraints imposed by confinement became design opportunities. In collaboration with MacGuffin and Alexandre Humbert they produced a collection of two-minute films, capturing rugs as spaces of illusion.
Filmstills © Meghan Clark, Pete Fung, Paul Bès, Weixiao Shen
GUANGZHOU TRIENNIAL X MACGUFFIN
The Guangzhou Wedding of Things
Guangdong Museum of Art, 2018/2019
To highlight unacknowledged African immigrants in China, MacGuffin joined forces with filmmaker Alexandre Humbert and local students to collect objects that represent Chinese and African cultures in Guangzhou. The installation staged remarkable weddings between them: Joss Paper Lacoste Shoes married Mao-Inspired Chadian Suits, iPhone Step Increasers married Nigerian Karaoke Mics, and Guangzhou Anti-Radiation Maternity Aprons tied the knot with Chinese Wigs.
Filmstills © MacGuffin, Alexandre Humbert https://vimeo.com/326538524
ECAL X MacGuffin
The Life of Things
Istanbul Design Biennial, 2018
Luma Arles, 2019
Z33 Hasselt, 2019
Can a magazine be a design school? Or a design school a magazine? In 2018, ECAL Product Design used MacGuffin’s editorial model as a methodology to study the use of everyday things. Their research resulted in an exciting collection of narratives and objects, presented in Istanbul and Hasselt. From Umbrella Stories and Wheel Stoppers to Real-Life Rulers and a platform for the Bottom of Things.
Photos © ECAL/Benoît Jeannet and © Joana Luz
HET NIEUWE INSTITUUT X MACGUFFIN
Inspired by Orhan Pamuk’s Modest Manifesto for a Museum, in which the writer makes the case for a museum that centers on everyday life objects, the exhibition Finders Keepers explored stories of collectors and their relationships to things. MacGuffin brought together more than 5000 everyday life objects from over 40 collections in a Grand Parade of everything, from razors to ropes and from coffee lids to traffic cones.
Photos © Mathijs Labadie and filmstills © Mels van Zutphen
ATELIER CLERICI X MACGUFFIN
The Life of Sinks
Palazzo Clerici Milan, 2017
The alluring life of The Sink was celebrated in Milan with an exhibition of related items chosen by a select group of sink users and aficionados. They motivated their choice of sink-related ‘MacGuffins’ in a series of mini-documentary podcasts, celebrating their love for kitchen towels, siphons, taps and grinders.
Photos © Delfino Sisto Legnani