Ever wondered what’s on the bookshelf of some of your favourite creatives? What books they turn to in need of inspiration or reference? Whether they’re a messy Mary or a tidy Tina? Well look no further, because every week we invite someone from the creative industries to share with us not only a rundown of their favourite five books in the whole ruddy world, but also a real-life picture of the shelf on which these esteemed titles live.
Great Bookshelf Photos
Citing a changing climate in the reading world, the furniture authorities are putting a new spin on the old bookshelf – redesigning it to store anything but books.
The storage mavens at IKEA have noticed a shift in what consumers are storing in their bookshelves. After all, a Kindle can hold thousands more books than a wooden tower in the living room. According to The Economist, IKEA will release a new version of its classic BILLY bookshelf next month, one that's focused less on storing books than storing, well, anything and everything else. The company is finding that customers use their shelves increasingly for “ornaments, tchotchkes and the odd coffee-table tome,” and less so for reading material.
Johan and I bring our Lil Billy back to IKEA to talk with Urban Björstadius from Sverige Radio about our project.
A correlation between the 4th shelf in IKEA’s Billy Bookshelf and the Golden Section used in art, architecture, and book design for centuries has been discovered. The researchers call their discovery the Golden Shelf.
"producing a solid cast of where the space within a
container would be..." - Rachel Whiteread - Untitled bookcase
If interested, you can download it here:
The work of Temple Grandin as referenced in my Virgins guide to Ikea. Temple's revolutionary insights have changed the way cattle are handled at meat factories, farms and marts. Reducing stress on animals the designs induce docility and hence the pliability of animals. Similiarity with the Kungens Kurva store are notable - especially in the movement to single file chutes from wide lanes. Her work can be explored further on the always excellent www.ted.com and and also in a recent movie starring Claire Danes.
As an impoverished wannabe spartan eschewing the odious collection of 'stuff' and with an 'ah sure this will do' attitude Ikea has never entered high on list of priorities, never made it to a mid-life bucket list and the Ikea evangelists entreaties have largely fallen on deaf ears, blinkered eyes, upturned nose and perhaps more importantly hands pulled out of empty pockets a la Charlie Chaplin in tramp mode. This assignment had changed that. I had John and Johan's money for a start. Accompanying me was Sille, a Danish native, very accustomed to the the way of Ikea and if I were to continue my 'virgin' simile I would have to call her a very bad name indeed.
p.s. All the pictures and videos are cited from their blog.
This Billy is located in an apartement in Kungsholmen, where my Norwegian friend Oda lives. This low-slung Billy has two, quite separate, uses. On top, it is decorative and presentational, while the interior more has the character of storage. The intention was for all three doors to be in glass, but since IKEA only had two glass doors at the time of purchase one became a solid one.
Spatializing and Personalizing Billy
The project sets out to use the Billy Bookcase as a site where interactions between the space and the individual are played out. In other words, we would like use this project to illustrate what the space does to the individual as well as what the individual does to the space.
Annika, Darcy, Dasha, Som and Yi-Ying
Description of the project
Our idea is to imagine the Billy bookcase both as a space and as a person. What we will do is to create three distinctive layers out of two Billy bookcases. The middle layer will symbolize the private sphere whereas the remaining two layers the public sphere. In order to demonstrate the fluidity of the boundary between the private and the public, we want to take away the back of the bookcases so there is no distinction between the front and the back. We would also like to mobilize the bookcases by adding wheels to them so each layer can be moved by the viewer. Furthermore, the boundary between the private and the public is further challenged by complicating the middle layer. What we want to do is to use cellophane to further divide the middle layer into two halves. The quality of cellophane can create a sense of ambiguity where the viewer can only vaguely see the objects behind the cellophane.
We have not decided on the content of this project, that is, “things” we will put in the bookcases. We have agreed that the content will be determined by the material we have collected through our interviews with Billy owners. We are thinking about including both tangible and intangible things (audio, visual or smell etc.)
Two Billy bookcases, wheels, hinges, handles and cellophane.
It's called Post-Wedding Depression, and is a performance with and by my friends in the Stockholm-based dancing troupe Johanssons Pelargoner och Dans.
What I find very interesting about the Billy bookcase from David and Kristin almost didn’t come up during the interview. When I asked if they had any difficulties putting it together they first answered: “Not really”. Kristin then looked at David chuckling and adding: “Well, we had a problem when we moved and were putting it together for the second time. Should I tell?” – “Well it is kind of embarrassing for me,” said David.