MURAL - Maynooth University Research Archive Library

    'lkea sofas are like H&M trousers': the potential of sensuous signs

    Garvey, Pauline (2013) 'lkea sofas are like H&M trousers': the potential of sensuous signs. Journal of Business Anthropology , 2 (1). ISSN 2245-4217

    [img] Download (1MB)

    Share your research

    Twitter Facebook LinkedIn GooglePlus Email more...

    Add this article to your Mendeley library


    What makes Ikea sofas similar to H&M trousers? Clothing and furniture retail are increasingly aligned, as both follow fashion trends and seasonal change. Because of the transience that shifting trends imply, clothing is often read as a signifier of superficial or frivolous expression, masking more important realities that lie elsewhere. In this article, I follow Webb Keane in asserting that when treating clothing as a sign of surface adornment, as a mere communicator of meaning, one not only dematerialises the sign but foregrounds meaning over action. In focusing on the sensuous qualities of signs (qualisigns), I view Ikea goods as sites of potential and compare how adorned surfaces are more than semiotic vehicles, but also material things that have effects.

    Item Type: Article
    Keywords: Ikea; H&M; qualisigns; material culture; furniture; fashion;
    Academic Unit: Faculty of Social Sciences > Anthropology
    Item ID: 4547
    Depositing User: Dr Pauline Garvey
    Date Deposited: 03 Oct 2013 16:04
    Journal or Publication Title: Journal of Business Anthropology
    Publisher: Journal of Business Anthropology
    Refereed: Yes
    Use Licence: This item is available under a Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike Licence (CC BY-NC-SA). Details of this licence are available here

    Repository Staff Only(login required)

    View Item Item control page


    Downloads per month over past year

    Origin of downloads