"It's Not the Objects Themselves, but the Idea Behind Them That Disturbs Many."
Contrary to the delusion of what is beautiful, Birgit Severin has her own new take on the subject by demonstrating through change, the imperfection and the natural decay of materials.
Inspired by her own experience with aging, the designer came to the conclusion that our elders in society feel less value as they age - especially for women. Courieousness encouraged her to explore the subject of age, change and death, and collaborated with fellow artist Marsano to document the disintegration of a bouquet of flowers over four weeks. The result is a time-lapse film, showcasing the dying, withering flowers. From this Severin took the inspiration she needed to begin designing unique vases that represented the process.
The ‘Vanitas’ series was inspired by the colour and shape of the wilting flowers, utilising the latest of technologies and finest craftsmanship. With 3D printing and rubber rotary molding, the vases were moulded into their own shape and resulted in a matte, patterned surface. This craftsmanship gives them a distinct individuality and represents thematically the process of change and decay to which they owe their particular beauty.
The aging of objects in our society, paradoxically, according to Severin, is much more recognized than our own aging. Certain objects, such as furniture for example, are said to sometimes improve a piece as it emits a "certain charm" compared to new modern furniture.
The main focus for Birgit Severin is to capture the beauty of the unequal and the non-perfect, all of which arises through natural aging and decay.
Text: Sara Umbreit
Photos: Provided by Birgit Severin