We talked to four guardians of our collective consciousness in the world of photography, hospitality, urban history and children’s books
“Ninety-eight percent of what we do is analog: think, eat, walk, breathe, kiss – in other words, the things that make us feel human and happy.”
When I walked into the analog concept store Supersense, I was expecting to see, hear, and touch things like the vinyl record he handed me. I wasn’t expecting to smell one. But that’s just what founder Florian Kaps encouraged me to do.
However, this is no dusty old vintage record shop where you can shuffle through scratchy oldies that will take you back to your high school prom. After extensive research, Kaps and his team put together the technology to produce a completely original recording that captures sound waves directly onto a disc – just one of the magical analog processes that have been recreated here.
Kaps’ analog journey actually began in 2004, when he first developed a passion for Polaroid cameras, one of the most direct forms of photography. This led to him rescuing the last Polaroid film factory and then producing his own brand of the film, called appropriately The Impossible Project.
After that success, traveling the world to open up Impossible branches in New York, London, and Tokyo, Kaps, 48, came up with the idea for an analog concept store. Where? It turned out his hometown, Vienna, was the ideal place.
“This city’s very analog, a bit stubborn and crazy, in a good way. The Viennese believe in tradition and don’t want to change, so the digital revolution has not completely destroyed everything yet,” he noted, “which is very interesting.”
One surprise is that the store is attracting more and more younger customers, those who’ve grown up in the digital age, who seem to get a kick out of holding – or sniffing – a real record, or not being able to find the delete button on a typewriter. Even his very own children – whose iPhone toting friends went from laughing at to envying the Polaroid cameras they would bring to school – have come around. “Now they’re even proud to tell other people at a party what I do, so I’m no longer a ‘loser,’ I’ve been upgraded to ‘crazy.’”
Of course, in the good way.