Coinciding with this year’s Salone Milan, Paul Smith’s Milan shop hosted the launch of Todd McLellan’s mesmerizing book ‘Things Come Apart’. The launch was held on the 11th of April at Paul Smith’s shop in Milan. His book Things Come Apart (Thames & Hudson) was available to the public for the first time ever.
A book that reveals the mechanisms of design.
As the international design set visit Milan for the world’s largest furniture fair, Paul Smith’s Via Manzoni shop stepped into the spirit with the launch of the book, which unveils the intricacy of some of the world’s most iconic products.
Normally specialising in automotive photography, in this book McLellan makes visible the inner workings of some of the world’s most iconic designs. From SLR camera to mantel clock to espresso machine, from iPad to bicycle to grand piano, every single component of each object is revealed.
These disassembled objects show that even the most intricate of modern technologies can be broken down and understood, while beautifully illustrating the quality and elegance of older designs.
Stunning photography is interspersed with essays by notable figures from the worlds of restoration, DIY, and design innovation who discuss historical examples of teardowns, disassembly, and reverse-engineering.
Each photograph is itself a work of art and offers a reinterpretation of our familiar world. They connect people with the child-like joy of taking something apart to see how it works and will appeal to anyone with a curiosity about the material world.
‘Things Come Apart’ is available from Paul Smith’s Milan shop from now to the 26th May 2013.
In addition, six prints from the book will be on sale exclusively at Paul Smith Milan.
Todd McLellan is a Toronto-based photographer who specializes in automotive, commercial, and conceptual work.
Artist Todd McLellan has more patience than all of us combined. Meticulously taking apart classic objects such as a typewriter or flip clock, he breaks them down piece by piece and separates them into groups. After he places all the pieces onto a white background with all the parts laid out together, he produces exquisitely detailed images that display the inner mechanics behind the devices.
But, the tireless artist did not stop there. McLellan created another series of dynamic photos that show each object disassembled again, but this time, it looks as though they’re caught in mid-explosion!
Sir Paul Smith, born in Beeston, Nottinghamshire on 5 July 1946. He is both commercially successful and highly respected within the fashion industry.
Smith was knighted by Queen Elizabeth II in 2000, after nearly three decades as a menswear icon. His collections of clothing and accessories for both men and women are usually identified by the presence of Smith’s multistripe signature somewhere on each item.
Paul Smith left school at the age of 14, a member of Beeston Road Club his only ambition was to become a racing cyclist until his father hauled him off to work at a clothing warehouse.
Smith had no real interest in his work during his first two years there except for the cycle journey to and from his home.
A terrible cycling accident put an end to his cycling ambitions, and it was only then that Smith’s career in fashion design began. He enjoyed his job and had forgotten everything about cycling.
Six months in hospital followed and during this time Smith made some new friends. After leaving hospital he arranged to meet them all at a local pub that was popular with art students. It was then that Paul Smith knew he wanted to be part of this colourful world of ideas, excitement and fashion.
Paul Smith started to take evening classes for tailoring with Gordon Valentine Tipton in Nottinghamshire who showed him how to cut cloth as well as the basics.
Later on Paul Smith joined Lincroft Kilgour in Savile Row after being spotted by chairman Harold Tillman, where his designs were worn by celebrities including footballer George Best.
With the help of his then girlfriend (now wife) Pauline Denyer, who was an RCA fashion graduate, and a small amount of savings, he managed to open his first shop 10 Byard Lane, Nottingham in 1970.
By 1976 Paul showed his first menswear collection in Paris, under the Paul Smith label.
He gradually expanded the retail business, being the first fashion brand to open on Floral Street in London’s Covent Garden in 1979, where his shop offered an eclectic combination of clothes and ‘finds’ for men which reflected his own magpie personality.
The international growth of his business began and most famously in Japan.
A converted town-house in Notting Hill, London opened in 1998 and is now his flagship shop, with the company’s operational heart remaining between Nottingham and London.
In 1998 Paul showed his first women’s collection at London Fashion Week, the women’s mainline collection continues to this day.
Since 2007, Smith has opened shops in Dubai, Bangalore, Leeds, Antwerp, Los Angeles and another shop in London, in addition to a brand new warehouse building in Nottingham.
Paul Smith remains fully involved in the business, designing clothes, choosing fabrics, approving the shop locations and overseeing every development within the company. He has showrooms in London, Paris, Milan, New York and Tokyo.
The success of Smith’s business may be attributed to his understanding of his dual roles of both designer and retailer; the success of his designs to his combination of the classic and the quirky and which allows men to buy relatively traditional (and hence commercially popular) designs that offer a ‘twist’ of individuality.