Friday, May 14, 2010

"What it means to be a collector"

I've been invited to speak at a Rotary dinner on the above subject. At first I thought I'd just talk about the experience of being filmed for inclusion on The Collectors, but I've found myself curled up in bed or gazing out the window of the bus to work thinking about the question in a bigger sense.

Why do some people have the urge to collect things and others don't? Any thoughts?

7 comments :

m1k1 said...

You have a collections policy. That makes you a collector. Me. I'm just a hoarder.

If you discount people who collect for investment reasons, are most collectors also hoarders?

Janet McKinney said...

It has to have something to do with loving the objects you collect - there is an emotional reason for collecting.

PĆ¼ppilottchen said...

I agree with Janet - For me collecting is something very emotional, too. I collect things I had as a child or wanted or remember from other children toys... ;D I love to fullfill myself the childhood dreams from yesterday! But I also collect things/toys because I like the design of some them.

Best wishes for your speech at the Rotary dinner!

Nicola

Anonymous said...

"collecting as a blend of acquisitiveness, intellectual curiosity, a desire to possess and organize tangible objects"..
"make sense of the multiplicity and chaos of the world, and perhaps even to find in it a hidden meaning."
"the joy of learning overtakes the [joy] of acquiring and possessing."
"human superstructure raised upon the foundation of an instinct. In other words, that which, in the squirrel, is an inherited mechanism of self-entrenchment has become, in the collector, a subtle technique of self-expression, self-emphasis, and self-extension."

OMG.. I never thought of this..
I just googled.. and so many resources.. =)..

I collect a few of lots of things..
simple.. round or oval forms stylish shapes of everything..milkjars to boxes ..clocks to winecorks..=D..
display them sometimes.. or hide them away.. I must be a squirrel type.. but an ADD one with some obsession about curves =)..

pinar

The Shopping Sherpa said...

M1K1: Actually, I have several collection policies (it's the Librarian in me) ranging from very tight ("European mass produced dolls houses and their furniture from the period 1957 to 2007 that are markedly different from other items I already have*") to vague ("Oh! Look at that! I like it!") depending on which collection I'm acquring the object/s for.

But at the base of any selection is that heart stopping moment of glee when you first spy the tea towel/ round thing/ pear/ black and white mid century china/ book/ vintage stationery item/ whatever followed quickly by that spark of lust of potential ownership...

(*I just made that up)

susan said...

Here is the course:
http://www.londonconsortium.com/courses/culturesofcollecting.php

Now march here and get one of these:
http://www.churchilltrust.com.au/applications/faq/

Ceiridwen said...

I also think it has to do with how sentimental a person is. There are people who don't collect at all :o