During the past few months, a great number of us have sought comradeship with others online, as Instagramming, Twittering, Zooming and more, reached new heights. As social beings, our desire to connect with others, to find a sense of togetherness, did not evaporate with lockdown—indeed, for many, lockdown acted to intensify the human need for interaction. ‘You don’t know what you’ve got till it’s gone,’ opined Joni Mitchell in her Big Yellow Taxi, an observation that has never been more apt.
Even though the pause button had been pressed (and to a large extent, remains pressed) on just about every real-life activity—recreation, socialising, shopping, work—people stayed connected, albeit virtually. To that end, in order to maintain a sense of connection and camaraderie with clients, customers, and design lovers alike, and to bring some light to a dark situation, LZF asked people to tell us their tale (a reference to LZF’s award-winning Telling Tales campaign). Many accepted the challenge with gusto, telling us their tale in a myriad of weird, wonderful, and wacky ways.
The winning entry
The ‘tell, us your tale’ competition has now ended, and following adjudication by an expert judging panel, we have a worthy winner: the Dämmer family.
‘Hairdressing day during the lockdown. Cutting where there is nothing to cut. The young couple are waiting impatiently for their turn. Dressed up for a VIP party that does not take place. By the time it’s her turn, the mistress of the house has probably finished reading Tolstoi’s “War and Peace“. The hairdresser probably has the best day of the week. Something that resembles a virus hovers over everything.’
The judges enjoyed the parodied scene, with its origins in those awkward family photographs. They were also reminded of works by American photographers Philip-Lorca diCorcia and Tina Barney (where diCorcia’s photos straddle truth and fiction by combining real people and places, and Barney’s series of tableaux chronicle the complexity of interpersonal relationships).
The judging panel
The ‘tell us your tale’ judging panel consisted of three eminent women: Gayle Shand, Caron Grunschlag, and Marisa Santamaría.
Gayle Shand is the founding principal at Albino Squirrel Concepts, a consulting agency that collaborates with design firms, manufacturers, and allied associations. Driven by her passion for contemporary art, design, and business, Gayle believes that clear and concise communication is paramount when transforming strategic business ideas into effective programme solutions.
Caron Grunschlag is the co-owner of KE-ZU, a furniture importer and distributor based in Sydney, Australia, that has been working with LZF for the past twenty-four years. Caron’s curatorial eye, alongside her exposure to design trends and influences, have ensured KE-ZU has forged long-lasting relationships with designers and brands.
Marisa Santamaría is the Director of RED-AEDE (a meeting of Spanish design companies), a researcher specialising in international design and architecture trends, a teacher, writer, and curator. Moreover, she is a founding member of Círculo de Orellana, a professional women’s association. Read LZF’s ‘people with character’ interview with Marisa here.
A selection of the ‘tell us your tale’ entries
Jane Darroch Riley