Eyesight test in the living room

The Swedisch furniture discount store IKEA sells a wall lamp that surprises. The lamp, designed by David Wahl for IKEA of Sweden is a opaque  glass that can be accessorized with various design patterns. One of these includes letters that decrease in size to the bottom as it is known from the ophthalmologist. For decoration purposes, here a eye chart  is taken into the living room, or where else?

Screenshot: IKEA "Gyllen" lamp (2013)
Wall lamp by IKEA in the design of an eye chart

The idea itself is taken from a unique but everyday situation. Its utilization tehrefore is even more interesting.  Out of which reason a person will put this design in to his/her room? Is IKEA/the designer targeting the qualified customers like ophtomalgists? Is it a courtesy for the computer bound workaholics in order for them to be able to daily check that their seeing ability does not suffer from the constant light form the screens? Is it a reminder for the ones that have a weak sight that they only can read the first line and it never will become better? Or is it for them to be pleased that they still can read it and what they see remains constant?

The final reason can be only named by the ones who buy it in the end. Yet, it is quite interesting that the dignified chart which partially decides about “yes or no” for glasses, which partially decides  “yes or no” about being allowed to make a driving license is now sold as a gimmick at the mass market.

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