Our bag reference archive falls somewhere between an ongoing project and a living entity. It’s numbers gradually swell and when critical mass is reached a cull takes place. An easier job than one would expect if in the correct frame of mind. This improves the quality of the whole, new juxtapositions offer different perspectives and fresh inspiration, which is of course the archive’s purpose.
We added something particularly special to the collection over the weekend. This bruiser of a bag was made for The Midland Bank. We judge from the heavy bark-grain leather, thick metal frame and solid brass lock that it’s original function was transportation of cash. It’s many years of use have probably improved the leather, the shiny black surface has many cracks revealing a tan core. The combination of the heavy materials (empty, the bag weighs 2.5kg), robust construction and squat proportion really set this bag apart from it’s peers. The lever lock snaps shut with a satisfying clunk and opens up with a quarter turn of the original key, still attached to the handle with a grubby length of string.
Oh, and to answer the obvious question, no. No matter how many times we search the interior we’ve been unable to locate any of the original contents.
If this Journal post, and our bag archive is of interest then please let us know and we’ll dive into it for another post in the near future.