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Decor Disputes: Why the Contemporary Hipster Aesthetic is Fundamentally Dishonest

Decor Disputes: Why the Contemporary Hipster Aesthetic is Fundamentally Dishonest
To put a finer point on Alex's term 'Contemporary Hipster,' think obsessions with upcycling, distressing, and plywood. Sound a little familiar? Yeah, it does to me too. Alex recently penned an essay using the term titled, "Why I Despise The Hipster Aesthetic." As verbs go, despise is one of the weightier ones. Why all the animosity to a design movement that--let's face it--is seeping into countless DIY websites? Because Alex says it's "fundamentally dishonest." Before  you start yelling at your computer/tablet/phone, you might want to read Alex's essay in full, because he makes some compelling arguments. Like this one:

  • In the 19th century, it became popular for wealthy curiosity-seekers to "go slumming," visiting poor neighborhoods, ostensibly to increase their awareness of social issues.... The self-consciously DIY aesthetic of hipster design reflects the same sort of mawkish attitude: the challenge seems to be not, for example, how to create the best possible chair, but how to create a chair out of parts you might find in a favela junkyard. The fact that these types of accoutrements are found almost exclusively in establishments where no lower-income person would be welcome underscores the degree to which this affectation is utterly superficial. 

And that's just a sample. To read the entire essay, visit The Autonomous Zone. When you're finished, I invite you to come back here and express your reaction in the comments below. Do you disagree with Alex? If so, what part of his argument falls short for you? Do you agree with Alex? If so, what part hits the mark?

Why I Despise The Hipster Aesthetic [The Autonomous Blog]

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