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The garden gnome gets a Brutalist makeover

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From the garden to your coffee table

Garden gnome in front of floral wallpaper Plato Design

Garden gnomes are the creepy keepers of a yard. With their bulbous shapes and bright colors, they’re often thought of as an object of kitsch. And fair enough. They’re not exactly a subtle addition to bushes and mulch. Also there has been no such thing as a tasteful garden gnome—until now.

Meet Nino, a handsome, polygonal concrete garden gnome from designer Pellegrino Cucciniello and the studio Plato Design.

Series of grey, white, and pink garden gnomes Plato Design
Pink garden gnome on side table Plato Design
Plato Design

This geometric masterpiece, suitable for indoors and out, is the cheery garden gnome’s brooding, Brutalist cousin. The designers explain that Nino is an experiment in changing the way people think about a maligned object—say, a garden gnome—simply by making it look prettier.

“The challenge set out by the Nino project is that of overturning the perception of an object by working solely on language and imagery, not on its function,” they write in design statement.

It’s unclear that garden gnomes ever really had a function. But hey, we’re happy to see one that’s handsome enough to sit on a bookshelf. Nino is available in gray, white, and pink, for about $110 each on Etsy.

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