April 20, 2008

Jamie Hayon: Hey, Look! I Have Carte Blanche At Lladro!


Lladro hasn't crossed my mind more than twice in the twenty years I've walked past their store on 57th street. There was one radio report after the Northridge earthquake where a lady was talking about saving all her Lladro, and I remember thinking, anyone who collects spindly porcelain dolls in an earthquake zone deserves her fate. Otherwise, my sense of Lladro is, if Sam in Sixteen Candles' grandmothers collected porcelain figurines, one would be Hummel and one would be Lladro.

So the idea that Lladro is somehow becoming hip and edgy just because they hand over some excess production capacity to a flavor-of-the-day designer just so he can amuse himself by seeing his trademark bulb-eared creatures and custom Bearbricks rendered as overly precious kitsch? I just don't buy it.

Still, if you--or your grandmother--is into that kind of thing, then Jamie Hayon is your new painted porcelain bicycle. Have fun.

"The Fantasy Collection," by Jamie Hayon, creative director of Lladro, at Milan Design Week [designboom.com]
Hmm, every single thing look familiar? Hayon Studio [hayonstudio]


Still, on the plus side, somebody's little old grandmother is now probably going to have sitting on their mantle a porcelain version of a Platner chair and pretty hot MIL... uh, nevermind...

[PFILF? -ed.]

i'm dreading the day i inherit all my grandmothers (currently mom's) lladro...oy - already wondering how much i can get on ebay for them. ick.

OK so you have apparently deepseeded issues with Lladro but if not for the Maufacturer's name you would be able to appreciate the work ?

Or you just don't like any ceramic figurative art irregardless of the label ?

Or you just don't like Jamie Hayon no matter what medium he is working in ?

Or maybe you just needed something to vent on and saw an easy target........for the 'critical blog of the week'

no, I don't like Lladro, or Hummel for that matter. But then I am probably not the target audience for ceramic figurative art, so my opinion is irrelevant to fans before it gets out of my mouth.

I don't mind Hayon, but I can't help but see this involvement of a trendy young designer with an elegant, traditional, luxury objet company as anything more than a publicity stunt on Lladro's part--an attempt to borrow some buzz from a design world that largely ignores them--and an exercise in ironic bemusement, possibly at Lladro's expense, in a way.

So while I found Hayon's figurines interesting and kind of surreal enough to post about, I also saw them as what the title hints at: Hayon seeing what he can get away with.

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