Anesthetized Living


Matthew Sweet argues for mainting the distinction between hotel decor and the way we furnish our homes:

We expect a hotel room to be cleaned as thoroughly as if a corpse had just been hauled from the bed. (In some cases, this will actually have happened.) The domestic interior embodies the opposite idea: it is a repository of memories. The story of its inhabitants ought to be there in the photos on the mantelpiece, the pictures on the wall, the books on the shelves. If hotel rooms were people, they would be smiling lobotomy patients or plausible psychopaths.

He blames the boutique hotel for the way minimalist design has infiltrated our homes:

[I]t appropriated the vernacular of small-scale domestic design, giving its guests a sexed-up, spotless, intensified version of the home. It has effected a subtle revision of the relationship between the rooms in which people spend their lives and the rooms in which they spend their wedding anniversaries. The message of those magazine spreads is this: make your house look like somewhere nobody lives.

(Photo by Dean Kaufman of Dwell with Kaufman's permission, via Unhappy Hipsters.)