We Have Always Been Modern(ist): Temporality and the Organisational Management of ‘Iimeless’ Iconic Chairs

Marta Gasparin*, Daniel Neyland

*Corresponding author af dette arbejde

Publikation: Bidrag til tidsskriftTidsskriftartikelForskningpeer review


In organisation studies, objects have been analysed as actors that enable sense to be made of organisational reality. We expand on this literature by exploring the times of the modernist design firm through its iconic chairs, using archival and contemporary ethnography to study timeless design. We suggest that studies of organisational times that focus on selectivity in organisational memory or history can be augmented through a detailed study of the folding of pasts, presents and futures into objects. Furthermore, we advocate for the treatment of objects as material semiotic actors that participate in the construction of organisational times, with iconic chairs acting as disruptors of otherwise linear organisational times. As material semiotic actors, these objects do not enable a single organisational time, but instead participate in disrupting time, deny any possibility of a pure and linear form of time, continuing to provoke the organisation and its members.
Udgave nummer3
Sider (fra-til)354-373
Antal sider20
StatusUdgivet - maj 2018
Udgivet eksterntJa


  • Desing
  • Neo materialism
  • Organisation theory
  • Prototype
  • Science technology studies
  • Temporalities
  • Timeless