Last week I was one of a very select group (that’s 10 and four of them are celebrities!) who was offered the chance to bring this new television into their home and photograph it. Some of you may recognise it; the Samsung Serif TV designed by the Bouroullec Brothers which was unveiled at the London Design Festival in September.
It’s a wonderful thing – mainly because it doesn’t look like a telly. Actually, it does look like a telly but, crucially, it also looks like a piece of furniture. And for anyone with a passing interest in their interior design, the current huge black boxes are, frankly, a bit of an eyesore. I have painted the walls of my sitting room black, partly to disguise the large blackness that is the telly which is so dominating otherwise.
Why is it that the television cables and plugs are all diagonally opposite the door into the sitting room so that it doesn’t matter how fabulous your artwork, your sofa or your rug, they are all the second thing you see.
Well, that could all change with this. It will probably still be the first thing you see but you won’t mind, because it’s a pretty sexy bit of kit to be honest. Enid Cat certainly thought so. The shoot took twice as long as she photobombed nearly every picture.
The television, which is shaped like a capital I in profile, comes in navy blue (but if I call it Farrow & Ball Railings you will understand that it’s sometimes black and sometimes blue and possibly even dark grey), deep red and white. It also comes in three sizes: the red mini sits on a shelf, the medium and large have rather elegant legs as you can see from the images.
Ronan and Erwen Bouroullec are the first designers who have been given permission by Samsung to develop the user interface and, as a result of which, have come up with a couple of interesting ideas. The first of which allows the screen to double up as a clock which is perfect for the mini one in an office. The clock is rather sweetly old-fashioned too – older readers may remember watching the schools programme where a white clock on a black background ticked down the seconds till the show was due to start.
The other is the curtain mode. This blurs the screen and reduces it to a moving abstract pattern. Why? Well two reasons; one if, for whatever reason, you don’t want to look at the adverts – this is handy at this time of year when the children want EVERYTHING SHOWN. And two, and this is good, it’s a bit of a parental control. You know that moment where you’re deep into Silent Witness and a graphic autopsy begins just as the four-year-old wanders in because he can’t sleep? Bet you wished you could have drawn a virtual curtain across at that point don’t you. Cos he definitely ain’t sleeping now he’s seen THAT.
The other feature is that the serif parts of the letter I act as a shelf on the top so you can further incorporate the television into the furniture of the room. Years ago (in the 70s) we all had stuff on top of the telly and I remember wondering where we were supposed to put it all when they got gradually flatter and flatter. If nothing else it’s a really good place to put the remote control – stops you digging down the sides of the sofa and shouting at children for ten minutes. Or maybe that’s a cathartic part of your day…
So, would I buy one for my house? As someone who weeps hot tears whenever my husband or children complain that the television isn’t big enough and say they want to buy a new one, yes I would. Nuff said.
You can buy it online here and orders should only a week to turn around so if you’re quick you can get one in time for Christmas…..