Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Hunters & Gatherers: Found Objects

One of the funnest aspects of appreciating the Ancient Styles is searching for and finding various objects which can be incorporated into a new creation or some room design. I'm not averse to pulling over to the curb when someone sets out an unwanted treasure on trash pickup day, and I'll always stop in at the local Goodwill or Salvation Army store to see what the truck has brought in. Fortunately, most of what I'm looking for is clearly out-of-fashion, and unless it's an antique of some obvious value, the object is usually left sitting on the shelves for me to claim.

This Renaissance-style candle sconce (left) is a great example of just such an item; it's ornate strap work and flourishes modeled in the very best heavy plastic that you could find in 1963, when it was manufactured by Homco. Though I know most would be totally dismissive of anything plastic, this sconce is actually quite well-done; the original finish certainly does not look like plastic, and at $1.50, it was a nice fit for my current budget. My only regret is that I could not find a pair.

The second example I've included here today wasn't really found by me, but obtained as a gift from my best friend, who was a former city councilman. Back in the 1990's a local redevelopment project required a partial demolition of the huge M. O'Neil Co. department store on Akron's Main Street. Though most of the building was thankfully preserved and renovated, the back portion was taken down, and my friend claimed a few of these cast concrete parts from the Italian-renaissance balustrades that graced some of the upper office windows. About 12" long, I once thought to make some type of lamp or candle-base from it, but for now, it remains an interesting and sentimental relic.

If you have any interesting found objects of your own, send us a photo - we'd love to see them.

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