Target looks at Wired Glamour

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A while back Virginia Postrel wrote about Wireless Glamour – the absence of wires from the glam photos of technology used in advertising, etc. I found these pictures in a Target advertising circular called Room Solutions. I was amazed to see pictures of messy rooms, where people own lots of stuff, it’s messy, askew, and yes indeed, there are wires – cables, cords, the whole real deal.

Sure, the pictures are entirely stylized and sort of hyper-real, but somehow it’s relieving to see a significant move away from the more idealized and yes glamourous consumer images that advertising is so fond of. I was at an annoying deisgn conference a couple of years ago and was struck when someone from IKEA showed fieldwork photos – messy homes overflowing with stuff. Of course, it wasn’t the photos that I was struck by – in doing ethnographic research, I’ve taken a million of those “real” pictures myself over the years but I was struck by the reaction – laughter. Designer after designer showed luscious product pr0n but one person showed realistic images and were met with ridicule. Now Target is using the mess of real life to help depict their ideal world – where consumers’ homes are messy and overflowing with stuff – stuff purchased at Target.


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