The GoGo Kitchen is featured this week on Remodelista as part of a very cool trend Julie Carlson has identified as "the deconstructed kitchen." Carlson called this idea the "less-than-perfect kitchen, cobbled together from disparate elements" and "the next wave in kitchen design." She mentioned 17 other examples this week but chose to feature the GoGo, and Margot Guralnick wrote this great piece about how it came together.
I hadn't thought of the GoGo as "deconstructed" before, but I like this idea as a design aesthetic. I've never been a fan of design being too perfect. I like a little funk and lean, some patina and soul. I enjoy interesting juxtapositions and making discarded items and materials useful once again.
If there's an overall philosophy I subscribe to, it's the Japanese notion of wabi-sabi, and there is a book I always have near me: Wabi-sabi for Artists, Designers, Poets and Philosophers. In his introduction, Leonard Koren's opening words are, "Wabi-sabi is a beauty of things imperfect, impermanent and incomplete. It is a beauty of things modest and humble. It is beauty of things unconventional." The moral precepts of wabi-sabi, according to Koren, are to get rid of all that is unnecessary, and to focus on the intrinsic and ignore material hierarchy.
As I set out to design a kitchen for our small space, wabi-sabi mingled with my desire to repurpose old and salvaged items and set them next to sleek, modern and energy-efficient appliances, and what a happy collaboration to get to work with my friend, the artist Jeff Smith, who has worked exclusively with found and salvaged materials for almost 30 years.
We're thrilled with the response we've been getting from people who come by ModNomad, from media and from those of you who are getting in touch to learn more. We look forward to working with like minds and seeing where this idea can take us...and the American kitchen.
Whether we're wabi-sabi or deconstructed, we want to work with people who are excited by such ideas and the movement away from overpriced and oversized kitchen remodels. For me, the GoGo is about living with functional art and living sustainably. It's about having a piece that is just right for now, but can change and grow with me as my life evolves. And it's about celebrating the beauty of meaning.
Photography by Jim Stone