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Handwork and Mass Production Essay

Posted by admin as Sample papers

Sample Essay on Handwork and Mass Production

One should start by saying that industrial revolution had changed the world not only by creating more job opportunities to people across the globe but also it had contributed to the creation of more goods and services for the market. The products that originally were created during the industrial revolution and that are still the most popular today are called mass produced goods. These goods differ from their hand made counterparts from the past and aim to serve different markets and rely on different promotional means.

The chairs created by Chippendale are certainly different from the chairs made by IKEA company yet technically have the same purpose of being a place for people to sit on.

The Chippendale chairs are all hand made and that signifies that they were created before industrial revolution. Industrial revolution and automation of production aimed at eliminating redundant labor and substituting it with the machines, tools, assembly lines and other efficiency and productivity boosting means. Chippendale’s chairs at a glace are unique since they are made by hand. Ikea’s chair is a typical mass produced product optimized for efficiency and costs.

The Chippendale’s chairs in our focus are also different from each other. It is hard to understand from the picture and without viewing the actual chairs whether or not they are made of solid metal or are created from wood. The legs, the side arms and the back side of the chairs are all artistically decorated with some unique ornament that attempts to represent Chinese traditions of constant change and matchlessness as found in nature. Ikea’s chair, on the other hand, as noted earlier is optimized for costs. It is basically made out of two parts (legs and chair) that are tied up together with screws. The legs are very thin just like the plastic seat. It is believed that the legs and the seat were molded at different plants with the only human participation in creation of these chairs was the attempt to tie them up with 4 screws. It feels that the chairs like the one seen at http://www.ikea.ca/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/ProductDisplay?catalogId=10101&storeId=3&productId=11422&langId=-15&parentCats=10117*10187) are so simple only for one reason: one can make more simple things within a limited period of time and with limited resources and thus sell it to more people at a cheap price and still earn good profit.

Chippendale’s chairs, can’t be quickly understood since their shape and the looks certainly do not show that they were created for millions of people yet rather one feels that they are created solely for one family and are one of a kind.
Indeed Chippendale’s chairs were originally created for wealthy people who could afford to pay the artisan for his/her accurate and impressive work. The chairs, although designed for the same purpose and probably for the same interior (room, dinning room) are different and thus draw our attention. One gets fascinated by the vigorous ornament of the chairs, which adds a special flavor and experience to each chair. I would not be surprised that because of different ornament one develops a different feeling when sitting in each of Chippendale’s chairs.

Ikea’s chairs, on the other hand are supposed to be identical, since they are created with the absolutely same tools by the same equipment. Chippendale’s chairs were created by an artist who could possibly not do the exact same thing, while Ikea’s chairs were created at a plant and could not be different from each other. Still, Ikea’s chairs follow some vogue and are crated for the purpose of meeting the needs of the market.

Speaking about the reason why the chairs are so different, one should understand that the historical difference and behaviors made them that way. Before the industrial revolution, and the absence of mass production goods all products/services were original and unique. Industrial revolution brought the idea of using the resources wisely and spending as little as possible on production while charging as much as possible yet not too high to beat the competition. As a result, Ikea’s chair is seen as a nice piece of work, yet which apparently had been created in millions and is not unique. Chippendale’s chairs are different from each other and one can certainly assume that they would be different from absolutely any other chair in the world.

Thomas Chippendale, Chinese chairs, plate from The Centleman’s and Cabinet-Maker’s Director, 1754),

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