28 February 2009

Wooden but convincing

Wooden food from german toy makers Erzi.
I think these are brilliant because of the strange tension between realism and abstraction.
Each item is very obviously mass-produced; lathe-turned; with total radial symmetry- which is unlike most natural objects, and seems clunky. And yet, there is a simple attention to detail that suggests the real thing; the colouring of the courgettes, with even the slight pale marks  (from the wood grain creating inconsitancies in the uptake of the dye) are exactly like a courgette! The onions have a dead-straightness, with just an insensitive slot-cut to represent the leaves, yet the fuzzy string for the roots and the general effect is very lively!
Each one is like a little wooden poem; they've worked out how to say quite a lot about a vegetable with very little, and have not hidden the evidence of manufacture.

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