Stephen Paul Bayley (born 13 October 1951 Cardiff, Wales) is a British design critic, cultural critic and author.
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“Semantically, taste is rich and confusing, its etymology as odd and interesting as that of style. But while stylederiving from the stylus or pointed rod which Roman scribes used to make marks on wax tabletssuggests activity, taste is more passive.... Etymologically, the word we use derives from the Old French, meaning touch or feel, a sense that is preserved in the current Italian word for a keyboard, tastiera.”
—Stephen Bayley, British historian, art critic. Taste: The Story of an Idea, Taste: The Secret Meaning of Things, Random House (1991)
“Fashion is primitive in its insistence on exhibitionism, which withers in isolation. The catwalk fashion show with its incandescent hype is its apotheosis. A ritualized gathering of connoiseurs and the spoilt at a spotlit parade of snazzy pulchritude, it is an industrialized version of the pagan festivals of renewal. At the end of each seasonal display, a priesthood is enjoined to carry news of the omens to the masses.”
—Stephen Bayley (b. 1951)