I saw this article in the NY Times last week about writer/artist, Douglas Coupland’s home renovation project. The photo above (with the over-sized (unlabeled) Downy Fabric Softener bottle at the base of the stairs) caught my eye. I figured: if Coupland made this one package-related sculpture, then he must have made others…
I found them in the 2001 “Spike” installation at Totem Gallery.
The inspiration for … the sculptures was a family crisis, Mr. Coupland said. His niece, Sarah, was born in Vancouver two years ago without a left hand, at a time when statistics there marked an upward turn—a spike—in birth defects…
The sculptures include huge plastic bottles, recognizable even without labels—Tide, Downy, Alberto VO5. Mr. Coupland had a vision one night in a Vancouver Wal-Mart, he said. He was struck with the beauty of detergent bottles and bought dozens.
“'Any passion to collect has some meaning behind it,” he added. The meaning was revealed when a friend pointed out that the bottles were all shaped to attract the hand—and that they contained chemicals that might cause birth defects.
from A night out with: Douglas Coupland; Escape From Gen X
By Phil Patton, NY Times, September 9, 2001
It turns out that Coupland has done plenty of other package-related artworks. Too many examples to show them all here…
(But I’ll show 4 more, after the fold…)
(Douglas Coupland’s web site: here)
Beach Packaging Design