“Diversity is good”

Things, objects, stuff, trinkets, tools, materials, gadgets, the things we use, abuse, throw away, cherish, depend on: these are the things we own, simple objects for our everyday lives. They may or may not hold special meaning to us, but their importance, as objects of cultural identity, is unmistakable.

Produced by COLORS under the direction of Oliviero Toscani, famous for his controversial Benetton campaigns, 1000 Extra/Ordinary Objects is a humorous and educational guide to stuff from all over the world. Discover the wonderful absurdity of a priest’s portable mass-in-a-briefcase kit, or the stunning difference between flyswatters from Zimbabwe and South Korea. Ogle at the juxtaposition of neoprene surfing shoes and bullfighting slippers; have a gander at a package of emu cutlets and a can of blowfish soup. You’ll see that what is ordinary halfway across the world (or perhaps for your neighbors across the street) may be totally foreign to you.

In case you see something that you absolutely must have, check out the yellow pages section at the end of the book; here you can find out where to get it and even how much it costs, as well as lots of little tidbits of interesting information to make your journey complete. Next time you pick up your toothbrush or comb your hair, you may think twice about the things that you use every day – perhaps they’re not so ordinary after all.

editions Taschen, 2003

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