Momus and the 'Classic' Aesthetic

Everything from Mac computers to Coke got rebranded as “Classic” – the unique selling point being a fetishized reversion to a “timeless” plain vanilla form of things

I’ve been aware of the digital artist and musician momus for a while, but didn’t ever think to look for his blog. Thankfully, as so often, Jason Kottke points the way, highlighting an early summary of what the noughties has been about.

By decade’s end, though, blogging was imploding, whittling itself down to wispy microblogging and phatic status updates. The question “What are you doing?” has never been answered more, or imported less. Meanwhile, about 80% of the world’s population aren’t on the internet. What are they doing? Carrying water, and working for the Chinese.

Also, this appraisal of the trend to ‘classic’ design caught my eye, following the Retro-Aesthetic-Packaging-Round-Up we had at the beginning of the year:

…everything from Mac computers to Coke got rebranded as “Classic” — the unique selling point being a fetishized reversion to a “timeless” plain vanilla form of things, an ethical investment in solid, sensible practicality. This Apollonian-Vanilla “return to simplicity and utility” (super-protestant, eco-conservative, but also a kind of ancestor worship) ties in with consumer guilt about excess — it’s the anorexic antithesis to consumerist bulimia.

1 thought on “Momus and the 'Classic' Aesthetic”

  1. I’m not against ‘classic’ and ‘retro’ styling but it’s a bit boring to be rehashing the same fashions and styling. It’s becoming harder to tag a style or fashion to a specific time period. 60s, 70s, 80s are pretty clear but it seems that new styles started to fizzle out in the 90s and after 2000 …! Maybe I’m just too old to notice.

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