Modern Manufacture and Design

Modern Manufacture and Design "And you must remember always that your business, as manufacturers, is to form the market, as much as to supply it. If, in short-sighted and reckless eagerness for wealth, you catch at every humor of the opulence as it shapes itself into momentary demand - if, in jealous rivalry with neighboring States, or with other producers, you try to attract attention by singularities, novelties, and gaudiness - to make every design an advertisement, and pilfer every idea of a successful neighbor's, that you may insidiously imitate it, or pompously eclipse - no good design will ever be possible to you or perceived by you. you may, by accident, snatch the market; or, by energy, command it; you may obtain the confidence of the public, and cause the ruin of opponent houses; or you may, with equal justice of fortune, be ruined by them. But whatever happens to you, this, at least, is certain, that the whole of your life will have been spent in corrupting public taste and encouraging public extravagance. Every preference you have won by gaudiness must have been based on the purchaser's vanity; every demand you have created by novelty has fostered in the consumer a habit of discontent; and when you retire into inactive life; you may, as a subject of consolation for your declining years, reflect that precisely according to the extent of your past operations, your life has been successful in retarding the arts, tarnishing the virtues, and confusing the manners of your country."

pg 288 The Genius of John Ruskin.

Notes taken on a mobile device. Pardon any auto-corrections or incorrection.