Recently – through a discussion on the online forum llllllll – I found out about various appearances of modular synths in adverts for Swedish furniture company Ikea. Credit go to users xmacex and Knivtid, who provided the photos and most of the intel.
Now, this is interesting for various reasons. It’s a clear sign that modulars are part of a life-style aesthetic, they carry a shared symbolic meaning, which now reaches far beyond the “scene”. I guess this is both good and bad, but right now I mostly find it an interesting thing to observe.
Are modular synths part of a certain creative-intellectual middle-class aesthetic? Are they becoming a status symbol of some kind? To be honest I don’t know, but this definitely warrants some deeper thought, and closer analysis.
For now, I’ll leave you with a couple of photos and videos.
The artist in these photos is Andrés Beltran, one of the many artists in IKEA’s Genombrott campaign. Here’s a Videoportræt of him, where he talks about his work as a sound designer and the rabbit hole he went down during the lockdown.
Genombrott, which btw. means breakthrough in Swedish, seems to be campaign about promoting young talent in different creative fields and showcase how they dealt with the various issues that came with the lockdowns.
This one is not the only Ikea ad featuring a modular though. Here’s another one.
The photo seems to be taken from the video below. The modular appears at the beginning and the end. Again they are working with a musician, in this case the Swedish rapper Silvana Imam.
I should add that I’m in no way affiliated with Ikea, nor has the content been endorsed by them in any way.
This made me curious though. I think I’ll go look for more modular appearances in commercial ads now!