Illy Collection – NON Set of 4 Espresso Cups


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Illy Collection – NON Set of 4 Espresso Cups

Is it too easy to say that the desert of the ocean are nothing? After all, wile they are areas which impress us with their cast emptiness, they are also enormously powerful in their presence. The experience of being in the middle of the desert or the ocean makes you feel like all is endless and infinite. In this respect you may undergo an exhilarating sense of transcendence and of the sublime. While the endlessness of everything seems to lead to nothing, an endless expansion of space also offers peace of mind. The letters n o n or the word non and the figure 8, which also stands for infinity, are signs of an abstract language. They are representative of absolute positions of any content of context of things in the world. They are already existing figures of mental, cultural and philosophical identities. Readily available figures in a system of exchanges, they show up time and time again in endless variation in printed language. Haim Steinbach’s work with language proposes that reading is an act of seeing, and even if this is not always, strictly speaking the case, the graphic codes which proliferate in our current media culture accustom us to word and image arriving in the same package. Steinbach is interested in vernacular sayings, the sort of speech that strikes us as both direct and shared, both commonly and readily understood. The promise of vernacular in slogans, catch phrases, ad copy, figures of speech makes communication seem effortless. Words become memorable, easy to repeat. If language here hits it’s target, it’s because vernacular is an expression of readerly consensus or fluency in matters of social relations as well as about cultural meanings. Steinbach queries this consensus, because for him, what we think we know about what we see speaks to our understanding and misunderstanding of our place in the world, and about our levels of contentment and discontent within these relations and meanings. In his language works, when Steinbach conserves a phrase in his collection, it is an act of memory, or preserving a relation of language and community, this his insistence on duplicating the typeface, the original look of the words. What he does with this found relation by rearranging it visually and conceptually (as image and referent) invites viewers to participate in a replay of messages, to examine how we identify and re-identify with the language and image before us.

The collection comes inside a special box made by Illy. You will receive:

  • 4 espresso cups
  • 4 saucers
  • 1 accompanying pamphlet
  • 1 can of Illy ground coffee (now expired)

Additional information



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