Market: Mummy Dearest
Karen D. Singh, Alexia Brue, Sheila Kim-Jamet, and Mark McMenamin -- Interior Design, 10/1/2008 12:00:00 AM
It's a hoary joke among patrons and proprietors of vintage shops and flea markets: This is the place where old furniture comes to die. But what happens to furniture that actually appears dead? Sam Baron offers an answer with his Tapern System, through which moribund furniture is revivified by wrapping it in plastic tape, mummy style.
To introduce the idea, the French industrial designer scoured secondhand shops for pieces with good bones. The 1½-inch-wide rolls of tape he used to create new skin for a host of chairs, lamps, vases, and tables is printed with three lighthearted patterns of his own design. Tapern white features gray Liberty flowers on a white ground, Tapern pink has pink polka dots on a grey field, and thin white hatches diagonally cross the black ground of Tapern black.
As the art director of the Fabrica Design Center, a communication research operation in Treviso, Italy, set up by the Benetton Group to promote cultural literacy by fostering innovative product design, Baron conceived the tape for anyone interested in swaddling his or her own salvage. As an eco-solution, the medium is a natural. "It's something in between wrapping, decorating, and repairing," says Baron. "Basically, it gives a new life, a new sense." 33-6-63-22-17-61; sambaron.blogspot.com. circle 410