rallye / sixtant color (black/black)

Florian Seiffert


Braun rallye / sixtant color (black/black)

Seiffert's rallye was a stylised  reprise of Gugelot and Müller's  sixtant SM 31 of ten years earlier. In contrast to the tactile SM 31, the appeal of the new design was first of all visual. The difference is indicative of a revalued relation to the much vaunted concept of 'use'.

A fast expanding consumer culture had prompted the revision of the functionalist reduction of 'use' to the field of practical operations. An object's use, it was now thought, might have as much to do with its capacity to communicate, its semiotic function. As 'use' came to be regarded a social phenomenon, the idea that industrial design might strive towards the elimination of extraneous, not directly useful factors began to appear a self-regarding and somewhat absurd posture. Not only was functionalism's ideal of objectivity increasingly untenable, it was beginning to look rather dour, its stringent asceticism unfashionably self-denying.

Perhaps the worst result of this general turn against functionalism was the abandonment of the notion that industrial design might serve a social purpose. This was replaced with Pop's naive and unreflective affirmation of consumer capitalism. Seiffert's work for Braun is interesting for its attempt to move on from the orthodox functionalism of the Ulm HfG whilst retaining many of the school's  gains, most crucially in fusing form and function. His KF 20 aromaster, designed in the same year as rallye is arguably the most important of these. In the event, his synthetic pop functionalism lived through only a handful of designs and was soon succeeded by the somber matt black regime of the programm's last years. As with Gugelot's 'Scandinavian' works for Braun of the '50s, and Müller's small but hugely significant set of late '50s organic kitchen appliances, Seiffert's works propose a parallel and unexplored pop-functionalist Braun project.

See also Siefferts:

shaving mirror

BL 12 ladyshave

The rallye set also comprised models in black / red and black / yellow.

condition: apparently unused

price: £60