The interpretation of the Bible is nowadays clearly very far from the choices of the consumer, even if this dichotomy is still standing wherever the western thinkers had an influence. Expensive professional products on one side, with neutral colours, and cheap products with bright colours dedicated to a wider audience on the other.
From a designer's point of view, every project starts with a blank canvas, entirely white, borderless. The starting point is always white, even when working with pre-existing graphics. The task of the designer is to pick which materials, forms or elements should be used. Which things should be kept, which ones should be left aside.
A trivial approach would be filling the canvas with whatever is at hands: symbols, logos, text, pictures, drawings, colours. That’s where the tendency to decorate the objects that are dedicated to a wide audience comes from. It looks like the artist is asked to always have a palette filled with acrylics, oils, watercolours of every imaginable tint to please the visual consumerism of the public, to be a pop artist.
In support of this point of view proposing “abundance”, the etymological interpretation of the word “colour” by Isidore of Seville, as he positively associated it to the concept of “heat” (“calor”). (2)
However, the white canvas is pure, and every sign removes some of its purity. White slowly fades to grey. The pop artist thrives in the abundance of the Postwar, where austerity left its place to household appliances, cars and holidays — today’s designer lives in a bulimia that radically changed the climate of an entire planet. That's why today it's worth paying extreme attention to every sign we decide to trace on the white canvas. That's because today the other etymological interpretation of the word “colour” seems much more appropriate: an association with “hiding” (“celare”), concealing reality behind a decoration. (3)