MacGuffin magazine: getting inside things
'MacGuffin' is a term that is part of the world of cinema. It was coined by Alfred Hitchcock and indicates the means by which a plot acquires dynamism by setting a series of events in motion. It is, in a nutshell, something that is of crucial importance for the characters of a film, but which has no real meaning for the viewer. What makes a MacGuffin such is not the nature of the object itself, but the effect it generates on the characters of a story.
What does this premise have to do with the independent magazines to which this blog is dedicated? The answer is simple and lies in the name and the very nature of this bizarre concept coined by Hitchcock.
MacGuffin it is also the name of one of the most peculiar independent magazines we know. Particular, in this case, not so much for the object itself, but for its content. Before venturing into the wonderful world of indiemags, in fact, we had no idea that there could be someone able to dedicate an entire magazine, as many as 232 pages (two hundred and thirty-two!) To a single object, a MacGuffin to be precise.
Founded by Kirsten Algera and Ernst van der Hoeven, with the help of graphic designer Sandra Kassenaar, this design magazine focuses each issue on a different, seemingly banal but infinitely enigmatic object. From the bed to the windows, from the ball to the pants, passing through desks, ropes and sinks (yes, you read that right), combining scrupulous research with a clean and elegant layout, MacGuffin exhumes exhaustive mixtures of curiosities, eccentric collections, works of art whimsical and touching stories, all connected to the object on which the spotlight is placed.
The new issue, just arrived on our shop, is dedicated to an object that, with more or less awareness, we tread every day regardless of its history: the carpet. Not only expensive Persian rugs, but also cheap doormats, magic and prayer rugs, Navajo and Palestinian rugs (for which the carpet is not just a wall or a roof, but also indicates an unbridgeable absence) or "carpets" that come true and own local architectures, such as the Cretto di Gibellina, the land-art work created by Alberto Burri in the 1980s. And, between one yarn and another, a curiosity and a story, there is also space to explore the invisible fauna that inhabits our domestic rugs.
At the end of the reading, those 232 pages full of design, history, nature, art and culture, may have seemed too few to explore an object that you have always underestimated, but which will remind you of the fulcrum of the Big Lebowski plot, a carpet rubato that not only gave “a tone to the environment”, but to the entire film, but also Michel Focault's heterotopia, because the carpet is a space suspended between reality and imagination.
Obviously, the choice of this object in times of pandemic is not accidental. As Kirsten Algera and Ernst van der Hoeven write in their introductory editorial, in recent months the carpet in our living room has also delimited our living spaces, becoming the stage and panorama of our days spent between a call and a good read, a TV series and endless hours of smartworking.
We just have to advise you to take some pillows, lie down on the carpet in your living room and dive into this reading, treating yourself and giving it all the time it deserves.
Find the new issue of MacGuffin for sale at Frab's HERE