Photographer highlights 'sacred symbolism' of Apple packaging

Posted:
in General Discussion
The packaging for Apple's AirPods, Apple Pencil, and more, become art objects in photographer Johann Clausen's new collection.

Apple packaging as art. Source: photographer Johann Clausen, Wallpaper* magazine
Apple packaging as art. Source: photographer Johann Clausen, Wallpaper* magazine


All technology devices are now subjected to unboxing videos, but Apple's packaging has consistently received the most attention. That includes the most attention from Apple, too, which has famously has a "packaging room" with staff doing nothing but opening boxes to try out new designs. Now, however, an independent photographer has launched a series of art shots examining the packaging we usually throw away.

"The inner part of the packaging of my AirPods was flying around the studio and looked kind of interesting," photographer Johann Clausen told design magazine Wallpaper*. "So I held it in front of the camera and started playing around with it."

Clausen has worked professionally with Wallpaper* magazine, BMW, Cartier and Hermes. But this collection was reportedly a personal project.

"You don't usually pay attention to the packaging: it's hardly noticeable when you're excited about your new product," he continues. "They are well-engineered and well-designed white cardboard objects which are negative shapes of the objects they contain."

"These supposedly unimportant objects convey the 'spirit' of the Apple products that have taken so much importance in many of our lives," says Clausen. "They speak the same visual language and give off a familiar, comforting aura."

Extreme closeup photography turns AirPods and Apple Pencil packaging into art objects. Source: photographer Johann Clausen, Wallpaper* magazine
Extreme closeup photography turns AirPods and Apple Pencil packaging into art objects. Source: photographer Johann Clausen, Wallpaper* magazine


Clausen's collection in Wallpaper* consists of sometimes extreme closeups of detail in the packaging. The images are also untitled, which means they are rather freed from their usual context.

"We were surrounded by all the different white objects resembling each other," continues Clausen. "After a while, we started to forget the scale of the objects and the small packages suddenly became spacious and imposing. At this point, it felt like photographing utopian architectural models rather than just packaging."




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patchythepirate

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 11
    22july201322july2013 Posts: 2,521member
    I have said these exact words to my friends and family on many occasions: "Apple's packaging is a work of art."
    Beatspatchythepiratewatto_cobra
  • Reply 2 of 11
    dysamoriadysamoria Posts: 3,430member
    I have absolutely taken notice of Apple’s packaging, when I buy new Apple products. It’s beautiful, and it’s also egregiously wasteful of materials. I don’t throw it away, either. When I pass the device on to someone else later in its lifespan, the box goes with it.

    To this day, Apple refuses to use post-consumer recycled materials in their packaging. They act like their claim of “responsibly sourced” paper is meaningful. It means nothing more than greenwashing. “Carbon neutrality” is an insufficient goal, and it is, in many cases, already just a lie. This doesn’t even cover the unnecessary use of plastic film where reusable twist ties could be used, or just more recycled paper.

    Just like religions, taking something as “sacred” tends to cause people not to question it. Apple needs to stop acting like their packaging is sacred. It’s not. It’s offensive.
    edited April 26 twokatmew
  • Reply 3 of 11
    uraharaurahara Posts: 585member
    dysamoria said:
    I have absolutely taken notice of Apple’s packaging, when I buy new Apple products. It’s beautiful, and it’s also egregiously wasteful of materials. I don’t throw it away, either. When I pass the device on to someone else later in its lifespan, the box goes with it.

    To this day, Apple refuses to use post-consumer recycled materials in their packaging. They act like their claim of “responsibly sourced” paper is meaningful. It means nothing more than greenwashing. “Carbon neutrality” is an insufficient goal, and it is, in many cases, already just a lie. This doesn’t even cover the unnecessary use of plastic film where reusable twist ties could be used, or just more recycled paper.

    Just like religions, taking something as “sacred” tends to cause people not to question it. Apple needs to stop acting like their packaging is sacred. It’s not. It’s offensive.
    It seems that you mean that other corporations do better than apple in terms of 'responsibly sourced" and "carbon neutrality'?
    Please give us examples how Apple could use those companies as examples to improve.

    Or maybe it seems that you are just angry and want to sound cool against apple - to sound 'offended'?

    Which one is that?
    patchythepiratejony0watto_cobra
  • Reply 4 of 11
    mknelsonmknelson Posts: 830member
    dysamoria said:
    I have absolutely taken notice of Apple’s packaging, when I buy new Apple products. It’s beautiful, and it’s also egregiously wasteful of materials. I don’t throw it away, either. When I pass the device on to someone else later in its lifespan, the box goes with it.

    To this day, Apple refuses to use post-consumer recycled materials in their packaging. They act like their claim of “responsibly sourced” paper is meaningful. It means nothing more than greenwashing. “Carbon neutrality” is an insufficient goal, and it is, in many cases, already just a lie. This doesn’t even cover the unnecessary use of plastic film where reusable twist ties could be used, or just more recycled paper.

    Just like religions, taking something as “sacred” tends to cause people not to question it. Apple needs to stop acting like their packaging is sacred. It’s not. It’s offensive.
    Apple refuses to what, now?

    "We have successfully closed the loop on our paper supply chain. Since 2017, 100% of the wood fibre in our paper and packaging comes from recycled or responsible sources. When virgin fibre is needed, we source wood from responsibly managed forests. Through partnership with The Conservation Fund and World Wildlife Fund, we have protected and improved the management of over one million acres of working forests in the United States and China. And when forests thrive, so do local communities and wildlife."
    Beatspatchythepiratejony0watto_cobra
  • Reply 5 of 11
    lmasantilmasanti Posts: 113member
    A packaging ‘side effect.’
    I used my G5 white keyborad for long time —I changed it 4 times—. I also used it with my iMac and Mac mini. But when the 4th broke in middle of an urgent work, I have to change to a new keyboard.

    I always avoid ‘thin’ keyboards. They bother me for typing. And now, I must use it!

    But packaging came to the rescue! I just put the package box —a 1cm high box— bellow the keyboard and it works wonderfully!

    (Most probably, no one at Apple thought of this virtue.)
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 6 of 11
    BeatsBeats Posts: 2,532member
    Apple also innovated packaging this is why knockoff iPhones and knockoff iPads now have identical packaging (these idiots couldn’t even think of their own boxes).

    Apple boxes are beautiful and elegant. My grandma once found my 2017 Rose Gold MacBook and asked if it was a perfume collection. lol
    patchythepiratejony0watto_cobra
  • Reply 7 of 11
    chadbagchadbag Posts: 1,473member
    If your offended by something, maybe you need some introspection.  Offense is in the eye of the beholder/offended. 

    ———-

    there was a time when Apple switched to brown power boxes made of, IIRC, some percentage of recycled material and not bleached or anything.  For Macs and monitors and stuff.   

    They eventually went back to the white box. 
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 8 of 11
    JapheyJaphey Posts: 855member
    urahara said:
    dysamoria said:
    I have absolutely taken notice of Apple’s packaging, when I buy new Apple products. It’s beautiful, and it’s also egregiously wasteful of materials. I don’t throw it away, either. When I pass the device on to someone else later in its lifespan, the box goes with it.

    To this day, Apple refuses to use post-consumer recycled materials in their packaging. They act like their claim of “responsibly sourced” paper is meaningful. It means nothing more than greenwashing. “Carbon neutrality” is an insufficient goal, and it is, in many cases, already just a lie. This doesn’t even cover the unnecessary use of plastic film where reusable twist ties could be used, or just more recycled paper.

    Just like religions, taking something as “sacred” tends to cause people not to question it. Apple needs to stop acting like their packaging is sacred. It’s not. It’s offensive.
    It seems that you mean that other corporations do better than apple in terms of 'responsibly sourced" and "carbon neutrality'?
    Please give us examples how Apple could use those companies as examples to improve.

    Or maybe it seems that you are just angry and want to sound cool against apple - to sound 'offended'?

    Which one is that?
    Straw Man argument. 
    Weak.  
    CloudTalkinwatto_cobra
  • Reply 9 of 11
    urahara said:
    dysamoria said:
    I have absolutely taken notice of Apple’s packaging, when I buy new Apple products. It’s beautiful, and it’s also egregiously wasteful of materials. I don’t throw it away, either. When I pass the device on to someone else later in its lifespan, the box goes with it.

    To this day, Apple refuses to use post-consumer recycled materials in their packaging. They act like their claim of “responsibly sourced” paper is meaningful. It means nothing more than greenwashing. “Carbon neutrality” is an insufficient goal, and it is, in many cases, already just a lie. This doesn’t even cover the unnecessary use of plastic film where reusable twist ties could be used, or just more recycled paper.

    Just like religions, taking something as “sacred” tends to cause people not to question it. Apple needs to stop acting like their packaging is sacred. It’s not. It’s offensive.
    It seems that you mean that other corporations do better than apple in terms of 'responsibly sourced" and "carbon neutrality'?
    Please give us examples how Apple could use those companies as examples to improve.

    Or maybe it seems that you are just angry and want to sound cool against apple - to sound 'offended'?

    Which one is that?
    Wait, from whole cloth you create a strawman narrative that dysamoria is comparing Apple to other corporations. How? Why?  
    Is the desire to defend the precious so strong that it outweighs honest discourse?  There's nothing in dude's quote that even remotely implies a comparison to another corporation.  But I'm sure you already know that.
    dysamoria
  • Reply 10 of 11
    dysamoria said:
    I have absolutely taken notice of Apple’s packaging, when I buy new Apple products. It’s beautiful, and it’s also egregiously wasteful of materials. I don’t throw it away, either. When I pass the device on to someone else later in its lifespan, the box goes with it.

    To this day, Apple refuses to use post-consumer recycled materials in their packaging. They act like their claim of “responsibly sourced” paper is meaningful. It means nothing more than greenwashing. “Carbon neutrality” is an insufficient goal, and it is, in many cases, already just a lie. This doesn’t even cover the unnecessary use of plastic film where reusable twist ties could be used, or just more recycled paper.

    Just like religions, taking something as “sacred” tends to cause people not to question it. Apple needs to stop acting like their packaging is sacred. It’s not. It’s offensive.
    Egregiously wastegful?? Lolol. We have a serious math problem in society. The same people complaining of 'waste' like this are also ordering take out 10x per month and contributing 10,000x more 'waste' than is used for their one apple product they buy each year. I know people that carry around metal straws, but still order takeout without thinking. What a joke.

    And to all of the sensitive people claiming straw man.. lol. Your claims of straw man arguments are merely a red herring. Comparing apple's waste to competitors proves a valuable point, and doesn't take away from the ridiculousness of the handwringing over apple's "egregious waste" lol. 

    This kind of neurosis is not logical and will never be satisfied until those who are affected by it are able to challenge their own sense of self righteousness (ie never). When Apple starts shipping its products in burlap sacks they'll complain about the carbon 'expense' of harvesting the plant material. 
    jony0watto_cobra
  • Reply 11 of 11
    dysamoriadysamoria Posts: 3,430member
    My dog, the desperation to defend this company...

    Examine: ”...recycled OR responsibly sourced...” is the key language. This is basically language to get out of stating the untruth that they’re using 100% post-consumer recycled materials in their packaging. It gives zero detail on what percentages of either, but we can see what they’re not putting on the packaging (overt statements of the post-consumer content), though I haven’t bought a new Apple product of my own for a while and might’ve missed a statement on my GF’s new MacBook almost a year ago. They’re also not talking about the plastic.

    The strawman of me comparing to other companies is burning away and only one person noticed I never compared Apple to anyone else. 👍🏽

    Apple makes big PR claims for environmental excellence, and I’m challenging them on those. It’s got to be more than talk and clever definitions. If they’re going to market themselves as this caring corporation, then their claims deserve more critical thinking. Talk to actual environmentalists about what “carbon neutral” and “responsibly sourced” means. Don’t just accept corporate buzzwords and do no examination of them.

    I’m NOT comparing Apple to other companies (who, by & large, are abhorrent, through & through, and don’t do half of what Apple claims to do).

    I’m also NOT comparing Apple to average American citizens... who are generally disinterested in doing what’s right for environmental concerns... and who can really blame them when community recycling is a joke, national recycling is a lie, and corporations are doing the MAJORITY of the damage and committing the most egregious waste.

    It’s a ludicrous angle from which to attack my argument, but logically-fallacious thinkers gonna illogic when defending their precious Apple.

    My criticism stands: Apple prioritizes the appearance of their packaging over its environmental impact. They don’t deserve any “environmentalist credit” in that specific context. They DO deserve credit elsewhere, but this article was about PACKAGING, as was my criticism.
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