12/10/10

Kentile Moda Moresa - The elegance of old pain.

Aha! So it's Spain we have to thank for that eye-searing Mediterranean swirlicue puke fest that took hold in the seventies! At least, that's who Kentile points the finger of blame at. Also, it's not actually Spain, but a ridiculous cartoon of Spanishness that America mocked with deep, heartfelt ignorance. This ad is from 1967, so at the time it was cutting edge interior design... the very tip of the regrettable iceberg.

You may recognize this "Spanish" style of decor as everything that you looked at for three seconds before muttering "That'll have to go." while shopping for a house any time between 1980 and the present. 35% of every American landfill is occupied by wiggly wrought iron chandeliers and dizzying vinyl tile like this "Moda Migrainea" from Kentile.
In '67, we can assume that trendy people were demolishing rec rooms previously done up in nice clean modernist style, only to splatter the place with stuff from the Cheech Marin collection. Can I get anyone a goblet of quaaludes?
They've done that thing where you stick your TV and turntable in the wall to protect it from becoming obsolete.This is wise, because if there's one thing we've learned, it's that technology never improves and electronics never get upgraded.

The white square on the floor around the "entertainment zone" marks the boundary beyond which images on the TV cannot be seen. Trying to make out anything on the screen from beyond the white stripe will result in squinting of Bruce Willis magnitude. It must have been very chic, standing to watch The Man from U.N.C.L.E.



The shelves are filled with priceless artifacts / relics / shit from Old Spain, which is the name of the resale shop next to the Revco in Berwyn. I once bought a velour coffee pot there.

If my Spanish folklore serves me, I recognize characters from such tales as "Drunkey Donkey", "The Tilted Chicken of Cordoba", "Los Menorahs de Madrid"  and "I Cannot Paint A Cat".

3 comments:

Craig said...

I'm currently trying to right all of the 1980s wrongs that were perpetrated on the house I bought.

It's a cool '50s ranch that has otherwise been molested by -

Venetian blinds: Venice, like Spain, was once home to horribly dated design elements. There isn't a curtain in the entire house. It's all blinds with more pulleys and fulcrums than Fred Garvin's elaborate network of trusses.

Wainscotting: Wide, tongue-in-groove wainscotting that's on a 45 degree angle.

Wallpaper: the asshole that invented wallpaper should spend eternity in Satan's rec room, armed with a Paper Tiger and a paint scraper. God, I hate wallpaper. The broad who lived there put it on the inside of the bathroom door. Seriously? Seriously.

Ceiling fans: Every goddamned room has a ceiling fan, and they're of two varieties - either a) the multicolored fan blade kind that looks like it should be powering a float in the Gay Pride parade, or b)the kind with blades that look like big palm fronds, as if Sidney Greenstreet was going to come to the house to buy Rick's Cafe Americain or something.

I've singlehandedly kept a dumpster company in business the last four months.

Phil Are Go! said...

45 Degree angle wainscotting? Well, maybe you can blame The Man with the Golden Gun and the crooked Secret Service base hidden in the shipwreck in Hong Kong harbor?

Anonymous said...

I have two new additions to my Christmas wish list:
- a velour coffee pot
- the Golden Book of Illustrated Spanish Folk Tales featuring "I Cannot Paint a Cat"

Thanks P.A.G., great stuff!

- n. mouse

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