Monday, January 7, 2013

Mick Jagger + George Nelson = Best Pinup Ever

It doesn't seem likely that I've coined this term, porn? Does it already exist? Your idea of furniture porn may be somewhat different, but this photo sums it up for me: a downy-cheeked 22-year-old Mick Jagger posing languidly, somewhat petulantly, in his basement flat in Bryanston Mews. Somewhere beyond the frame lies his girlfriend of that moment, the model Chrissie Shrimpton (petulant and languid, too, one likes to imagine), but within the frame? A a beautiful walnut George Nelson for Herman Miller shelving unit (at least, I'm pretty sure that's what it is—I don't consider myself an expert in the things I can't afford). Mick looks like a Herman Miller salesman/spokesmodel, and this could be the world's most awesome print ad. It would also be a fabulous poster, framed and hanging in my office. If there were a way to make that happen, I would.

My brother-in-law gave me this coffee table book, The Rolling Stones: In the Beginning (Firefly Books, 2006), a few Christmases ago, because he knows, like most people who know me know, that no matter my love for chick singer-songwriters, the Stones will always be my Desert Island band, and that they remain in heavy rotation on the soundtrack to my life, despite the fact that I've been listening to them since 1982 (when I first laid eyes on stringy weird rooster-struttin Mick in his cheesy workout togs in the "Start Me Up" video). They just never get old. Well, okay, they did get pretty goddamned old, but these Stones, in this book, circa spring 1965 to summer 1966, are eternal eye candy, a perfect dream forever. My apologies to the Danish photographer Bent Rej, who took these photos, for not doing his work justice, but I invite everyone to go buy the book on amazon; it is quite reasonably priced.

I have to warn you though—out of more than 300 pages, there are only a handful of photos that belong in the Special Rolling Stones issue of Furniture Porn magazine, which I will found and edit one day. There aren't any of Keith; not surprisingly, you find him onstage, outside or on the floor of a nondescript hotel room. But there are some excellent shots of homebodies Bill Wyman and Charlie Watts as well as a good one of the depressingly haggard Brian Jones. Here he is in his rented house at 14 Elm Park Mews in Chelsea. Apparently every stick of furniture in the place was rented but dig that groovy hi-fi. That was Brian's.

Here's Bill Wyman and son in his London flat (at 8 Kenilworth Court for those who are mapping a future walking tour). Love the sofa. Love the low scale of all the furniture—and the picture of the TV where the TV is supposed to be? Or is that a radio? Not sure.

Charlie was the real surprise. I didn't realize he is half Danish, which would explain his good design sense. These photos of his flat at Ivor Court in Gloucester Place could have come straight from a Terence Conran book. Yum.


  1. Charlie's Ivor Court place could be featured in Dwell, it looks so modern. And to answer your question about whether that's a picture of a TV or a radio, I'm betting it's neither. In the 50s, 60s and 70s in the UK a lot of people ripped out their Victorian fireplaces (or in the case of new-build housing in bombsites, didn't put them in) and instead installed "electric fireplaces" or spaces heaters. You still see plenty of houses where they've simply boarded up the hole in the chimneybreast and just placed an electric fireplace in front. Whenever I see these I always look around for stylish members of the Stones as well as Herman Miller originals, but no luck so far.

  2. thanks for clearing that up, jen, ur totally right!


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