Art about consumerism---Hybrids of commodities and handicrafts---Idiotic products
Satire --- intended or unintended.
The most banal, grotesque, ironic, twisted or perverse creations of the capitalist marketplace.
Neuticles. Prosthetic testicles for your canine companion. In plain English, fake silicone rubber balls to be inserted into a dog after castration. Why? Ostensibly its for the animal, so it won't experience loss. Right. Or maybe they are for the owner?
Havana Harry. Already have a wooden Indian? How about a wooden Cuban cigar-holder? Smokin!
Solar energy at its most absurd. I thought I had seen the worst with the solar-powered insecticide-sprayer. But this one beats it! A solar-powered milk frother for making your cappucino in an eco-friendly way. There are so many absurdities in this product, I don't know where to start. From the Real Goods catalog, also at www.realgoods.com.
Ronald Mcdonald Christmas tree ornaments.Put fast food on your tree.
The Satellite Dish for campers. Don't miss CNN just because you are in the wilderness!
Get a Life. Jonathan Schroeder sent me this amazing postcard at
Contact Lenses. I don’t know what to say. The idea
of putting a bloodshot contact lens into my eye – which will make my eye
bloodshot for real – is just too bizarre for words. Or how about contact
lenses which make you look stoned? From the
Prince Lionheart Electric Baby Wipe Warmer. This is the recall notice for these vital tools of modern living. Consumer Reports says they are a shocking hazard. I find it more shocking that they sold 152,000 of these little items for $25 each! That’s enough money to buy a lot of polio shots or anti-malaria mosquito nets. But we can’t let our baby’s but get cold, can we?
BasketryBottles. The 19th Century Nootka people of the
Consumer Kachina. A wonderful painting by Cynthia West depicting the devil of consumption as an evil Kachina.
Pig Tattoos. This
is art, not consumer goods. But funny! The artist is Wim
Delvoyes and the museum is Middelheim
Head.The Olmec of ancient
Rice Patch Babies. Hong-Kong's answer to the Cabbage Patch Kid, these are probably made with child labor. The advertisement invites you to sponsor the 'mainland cousins" for immigration. Who gets to play the INS agent?
Name Yourself for a Commodity?Here is a corner of a program from the 1997 Indian Market in
Bali Kitch. Russ Belk at the University of
Utah has a wonderful collection of bizarre
consumer culture. Here is a piece of Balinese religious statuary, used to
advertise a restaurant for tourists in
The Right Way
to wear a Tie. Used western clothes go all over the
world. This picture from
Mr. and Mrs. Average American. A real industrial propaganda poster from the late 1940s, courtesy of Jonathan Schroeder. It was the time of MORE=BETTER.
Pepee.Used by actors in japan to make their genitals glisten when making porno films. Source:Colors Magazine.
Ugly Nipples? The Japanese Liberty Company asks "Do you care about having beautiful nipples while playing around with boys? If you do, their nipple lightening cream is the thing for you. Unsightly brown nipples will be a thing of the past!
The Ultimate Personal Hygeine Product. --feces odor tablets. Another Japanese innovation, these pills promise to make your excrement completely odor-free in three days of use. "...people must be responsible for their odors." says the bottle. 600,000 bottles sold in the first six months, according to Colors Magazine (no. 18, Jan. 1997)
Wear the Best - Wear the
West! Soccer (football)
is the most popular game in
Barbie Raid. Turkish advertisement for indoor
insecticide dispenser - Johnson Wax uses images of Western nuclear family (note
the blonde Barbie on the floor) to sell toxins. Courtesy of Guliz
The Dog-Diaper Website. This is not to be missed. Capitalism thrives on undoing the excess of capitalism.
World on the American Roadside. Links to a great website, with pictures of
the Parthenon, the Leaning Tower of Pisa, The Last Supper, and other famous
monuments of world (mostly European) culture as they appear in replica in various
settings around the
Fartypants. Its hard to overstate how strange and tacky and wonderful this website is. I only hope its a joke and they dont really sell underwear with fart filters built in, and all that other stuff.
Transcendental Trash. A decorated trash barrel from a village in
Electric Koran. Guliz Ger sends this picture from a shop in the old quarter of
Welcome to Fakeville! This is a sign
at the center of
MacCoffee. On the front it says it has "True
American Taste." On the back the back the instructions are in Russian, and
there is a tiny label "Made in
Coke is It. A ceramic tile maker in
Poopsie Daisy. A “toilet pre-spray” which “prevents toilet odors from affecting your environment.” The advertisement advises you to use three sprays before you go. Why this obsession with toilet cleanliness? Contributed by Rick Stepp.
Last Updated March 1, 2006