Alessi Hot Bertaa Kettle Designed by Philippe Starck 1989/90

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posted by John Clark alias Psychoceramicus on Wednesday 24th of August 2011 03:46:38 PM

This aluminum kettle is filled by pouring water in through the plastic cylindrical handle. Its design allows the water to enter the kettle, heat and exit through a different opening that appears to be an extension of the handle. Production of this kettle stopped in 1996. Not all of Philippe Starck's designs were so successful. This kettle, launched in 1989, is the favorite design fiasco of Alessi CEO Alberto Alessi. The cone-shaped shaft pierces the body of the kettle, serving as both its handle and spout. The complex mechanism needed to redirect the steam proved unreliable, leading Alessi to pull it from the market in 1997. Alessi said, "You shouldn't need an instruction manual to operate a kettle." Philippe Starck said: "The Hot Bertaa is one of my first pieces produced by Alessi. Alessi is a star, so it was a real highlight, a heart-stopping moment. Michael Graves had done it, as had Richard Sapper, so I had to be extraordinary, to show all my talent. But I became somewhat self-deluded and came up with the theory of immobile aerodynamics. There are certain objects that don't need to move, like a kettle placed on a table. If you give such objects movement, or dynamics, as they are unmoving, they might try to instil movement around them. It may be true. It seems to work a little. But with hindsight, I was just trying to get myself noticed, I wanted to make a masterly, sculptural object. In fact, this sculptural object is one of my worst pieces ever. It isn't very functional, it's dated, too fashion conscious. It's one of the things I'm most ashamed of. And to take the story further, this object, which existed for all the wrong reasons, also had a very difficult birth. It took 5 years to develop. Firstly because certain people at Alessi were very slow. And secondly, they didn't understand the complex system of valves and such. After 5 years, we couldn't recall why this object existed. So if a thing starts out badly, it ends badly, too. That piece was one of my big regrets. It illustrates the limitations of design, and it was responsible for my gradual loss of interest in stylistic design and masterly design."

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Michael Block is an American professional golfer. Having spent most of his career working as a club professional in Southern California, he received attention after making the cut and finishing in the top 15 at the 2023 PGA Championship at the age of 46. After making the only hole in one of the tournament during his final round, Block finished in a tie for 15th place, which was one of the highest finishes for a club pro in decades, earning him an automatic invitation to the following year's competition.

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  • Published 06.03.23
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