These toys have a very special place of honour in my vinyl collection. Each figure was hard won via auction, lottery, or sheer force of will.
The big guy in the back:
“5 Years Later” Companion by Kaws
1) A hand-sewn heart.
2) A laser mouse (oh, do they go wild for it).
3) A catnip-scented bird.
4) A miniature whale.
Okay, you caught me. I’m a Muppet freak. I love the Frog. I have a lot of different Muppet collectibles, but I thought I’d share Kermit, specifically, since he’s so well loved.
I found these items along a gravel roadside of interest. On a smaller scale they illustrate the slow process of decomposition, paper will break down quite quickly, while the baler twine, the piece of plastic and the aluminum can will likely linger much longer. Each will break down into smaller parts to become part of the soil composition. This leads me to consider how much detritus could be combined with natural soil and still be viable for growing plants.
Alumninum can be recycled almost indefinitely, and paper is naturally biodegradable, while the baler twine is generally made from a polypropylene product designed to degrade. Plastic such as the clear sheet particle can last for many years lingering as tiny tatters like the one on the top right. The grasses wrapped around this piece of plastic are grasping it, nesting plastic fibres with its vigorous growth. Plastic and plant are enmeshed in a process of harmonious growth and decay that is illustrative of the insidious nature of plastic as well as a testament to the resilience of nature itself.
I love vintage toys. You might already know that.
I had already taken this photo of elephants, when I went to Peter Blake’s exhibition ‘A Museum for Myself’ in the Holbourne Museum last week. One of his collections was of elephant ornaments – ceramic, wooden, plastic, shell, painted, jewelled, carved -about 100 of them. They looked splendid all arranged in a glass case, and the exhibition made me want to organise some of my collections into cases, etc.
Sir Peter Blake is a definite role model for all artistic hoarders!
I often collect things that are in this strange space between amusement and inspiration.
This handset, modelled after the type of phone that I watched fade out of common use throughout my childhood and adolescence is cordless and connects to my smart-phone via blue-tooth. The thing that’s fascinating about it is that using it feels right. The weight, the way one side sits on your ear while the other is directly in front of your mouth like a microphone—this is the form factor that makes sense for talking on the phone! I actually wonder if the reason phone usage is dropping has less to do with replacement technology and more to do with discomfort. I can imagine talking on the phone for hours with this thing. Can you say the same about any cell phone on the market?
What can I say about the TRODAT typo160? Typesetting with rubber stamps! It’s fun to have around, and though I rarely use it, it’s exactly the kind of object that provides a productive mental break from intensive brainstorming or writing. Open up the box and arrange letters on strips for a while. It’s really amazing what that kind of thing can do for the subconscious.
I have thousands of images on my computer. Some that I’ve made and others that I’ve found online and wanted to just file away for some future inspiration or reference. I liked the idea of framing a picture of an old commodore 64 floppy disk. I find it aesthetically pleasing, and there’s something about an image of a disk printed from a diskless computer that just tickles a part of my brain.
Finally, the game Set seems an excellent end note here. Each card has a variation of four elements: colour, symbol, number and shading. Twelve cards are laid out, and you have to identify a three card set, defined as either having complete variation in all elements or complete commonality in one: all unique, or all with a common element. You can read more about it here. It’s a good game to play to prime the mental pump, both in collaborations and solo. It’s a game entirely and purely about pattern recognition, and that seems to fit nicely with what’s going on here.