Aesthetic Philosophy: Delfin-Postigo House and Why I Don’t Read the Words

I never read. I just look at pictures.

I had a bit of a brain fugue just now. I knew I wanted to start with an Andy Warhol quote, but couldn’t remember Andy Warhol’s name. I could remember that Andy Warhol featured in the film Basquiat, played by David Bowie, and that Andy Warhol and Basquiat were friends, so I googled “Basquiat friends”, and lo, there was Andy Warhol beckoning from line 8 of the Career section in Basquiat’s Wikipedia entry. These sorts of things are endlessly interesting to me: how memory works, how the mind stores information, and how every mind functions entirely differently according to the person who uses it.

Today brings us to the home of David Delfin and Gorka Postigo, a fashion designer and a photographer respectively. I found these pictures somewhat laterally, via Door Sixteen via Apartment Therapy via Yatzer. All photos are by Manolo Yllera.

I love how they juxtapose dark and light, rectilinear shapes and organic surfaces, emptiness and density. The tension between these contrasts transforms the usual calming effect of an all-white interior into something more moody, raw, and sexy.

The pedigree of the art on the walls and the things furnishing the space is first class. David and Gorka’s collection includes pieces by Wolfgang Tillmans, Diane Arbus, Louise Bourgeois, Charlotte Perriand, Maison Martin Margiela, Isamu Noguchi, and Jean Prouvé.

While I’m not sure how I feel about the art, expecially in the bedroom, I can see how their choice of graphic (sometimes obscene) works add a necessary layer of intimacy in what could easily become a showhouse. There is an overall in-your-face boldness, but I still feel that real people live here.

They even have Pez!

Love the rugs.

For the longest time I’ve looked only at pictures and avoided reading the accompanying words. In the last couple years, however, I’d started reading articles and captions again to find out specific facts about whatever was being depicted in the image (i.e. who was in it, what was in it, who made it, what was it made of, where was it, etc…). I almost forgot why I actively started the practice of not reading words until today.

Reporting in the truest sense strives to maintain some semblance of an objective view, though most recognize that this is practically impossible. There will always be a filter of experience tinting what people see, do, say, think, etc…and it can be difficult, when someone feels strongly about something—love it or hate it or love it—to not proclaim, “This is the best thing since sliced bread! Look at this, it’s better than the rest!” Everyone makes judgements about everything, and likewise shares them, but reporting is already a primarily one-way communication, and where non-objective reporting tends to fall short is a failure to acknowledge differing points of view. It’s one thing to read, “Fashion designer David Delfin and architect-turned-photographer Gorka Postigo have an amazing art-filled home in Madrid”; it’s quite another to read, “The marriage of these two individuals under one roof is the epitome of sexual elegance” (emphasis in original article). Perhaps it is simply a difference in voice between sources (i.e. Apartment Therapy and Yatzer, respectively). I’ll leave that call up to you.

The “best” people in any field walk a fine—and sometimes treacherous—line between working to the fullest of their ability and knowing their limitations. If they recognize there is a unique audience for each idea|project|task|situation, often where the line falls is determined not by ability, but rather by an asking of whether or not the idea|etc… contributes in a desirable way to the life of the person doing the asking. This is one reason why “curiosity” is often cited as a shared trait among best people. Even if they aren’t initially good at something, if they are curious or interested, they will learn and become good at it.

The line gets hazy when interest is confused with taste. I personally don’t like the colour red. Of all the available colours of Le Creuset pots, red would be my last choice. But I love the red cookware Aaron and I have because of who gave it to us (our friends and family) and why (our wedding), and I’m currently working on a wedding featuring red as one of the focal colours. As much as I don’t like red, I can appreciate that it has particular characteristics and connotations that lend particular desirable effects. If I was to make choices based simply on whether or not I liked something personally, my world would be appreciably smaller.

In reading the Yatzer piece, I found myself getting caught up in the meaning of the words. The article, even the order of the images, develops an overt heroicism that I find unattractive, however much I like love the interior. It’s that kind of talk that led me to leave art school years ago—the kind of talk that haunts children, and continues to haunt them as they grow into adults.

Every idea, every thing, has a set of purposes and intentions, unique to a time and place. Recognizing that, ideas|things become tools—methods of communication—as opposed to edicts. Enjoy things for what they are, take everything you can, and appropriate what you can’t by transforming it to suit your specific purpose.

So let it be written.

Thoughts and essays on the art and design of experiences, spaces, things and living from Christina and I-D BOHEMIA

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