Guy Ben Ner - Stealing Beauty
I saw this video in the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago. Guy Ben Ner shot a fake sitcom in an IKEA, unauthorized, two years before Channel 101’s IKEA Heights did the same.
Apparently Ben Ner only works as a “video artist,” but I feel like production value and casting is the only thing keeping this from being an unusually clever 22-minute sitcom.
Most of the dialog is a philosophical discussion about the nature of property, but it’s not just a series of talking heads; the discussion is shaped around the fact that it’s between kids and a father, and there are smart visual jokes, like the kids getting paid for chores, so they can pay their dad back for bedtime stories.
Beyond the obvious contextual hint of shooting the whole show on someone else’s property, in fake homes where every item has a price tag hanging off it, I see no reason this couldn’t be made as an actually smart family sitcom, without the IKEA angle.
“Children of the world, unite. Release the future from the shackles of the past. My peers, it is our time to steal. Not in order to gain property but in order to lose respect for it. Property is like a ghost. You cannot possess it without being possessed by it. Steal and let others steal. Let property move freely from place to place so it will not haunt your home. Steal from the local supermarket. Steal from the city! Steal from the state! Steal from your parents! And above all, don’t accept inheritance—steal it. Rob your parents and rid yourself of promises you will have to keep. Children of the world, unite. Release the future from the shackles of the past.”
Whiting Out Your Favorite Brands
By day, Andrew Miller is a branding strategist at a New York design agency — working to figure out how to create memorable branding around perhaps not-so-memorable products. But by night, the former designer is stripping away that visual branding by covering it with white Krylon spray paint — to see which of our favorite products are still recognizable in their purest form.From a red Twizzler rope to an old Macintosh computer, the result is Brand Spirit — a blog of 100 ghost-like objects, photographed with an old 1970s camera, over 100 days.
Tell us how Brand Spirit came to be.
It started as a school project at SVA, where I was studying brand strategy. One of the things we talked about a lot in class was how, in Sao Paulo, Brazil, they banned all outdoor advertising, aiming to reduce visual pollution. Not surprisingly, businesses were very worried. But with the ban still in effect, the city is thriving — a recent survey even found that most residents find the ban beneficial. So, I wanted to ask, what happens when you start to imagine a world without brands?
“Look at that thing. She’s completely dry, first of all, despite the fact that water is spraying her in the side of the head. It also STOPS at the side of her head and doesn’t go anywhere else despite the thigh-high amount of steam building up and the random bubbles rising to the ceiling. To make things even worse, she’s showering in panties and is dropping the soap, because sex. And her shoulders are four times wider than her hips. And she’s casting a huge shadow on the wall, meaning the light is coming in I guess from the bottom of her shower. And she’s wearing lip liner, I think. Oh and also THIS PIECE OF SHIT IS IN A PUBLISHED COMIC AND WAS DRAWN BY A MILLIONAIRE.”