Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Good Things Come in Small Packages

Ages ago I talked about this cool thing I discovered called the Art-O-Mat. Some brilliant person decided to take old cigarette machines and stock them with small pieces of art and place them in various locations in the US. There are 82 of them in service! (Beats the heck out of what used to come out of them!) I thought this was so clever and was kind of disappointed that there were none in Canada.

Anyway, I shared the link and my friend Jess just happens to live near where one of the machines is located. She found it and purchased two pieces of art for me, which arrived in the mail today! The one above is by A. J. Anderson from Chicago, Il. If you are wondering what you are looking at, it's a wooden block. The neat thing is that the painting wraps around the edges of the block. In the image on the left, you see the front and the bottom. On the right is the front and the top. The hair also wraps around the two sides. When I have painted onwrapped canvasses, I have always done it this way because years ago my art teacher told me you should do that so even if you can't afford a frame, it will still look finished. Anyway, I quite like this little piece!

This second piece is a "Book of Secret Love Stories" which was a bunch of handmade paper snippets and a small fragment of fabric with a button sewn on. Interesting! You never know what's in the machines, but it's always entertaining!!

There is a local woman who is doing a spin off of the Art-o-mat concept, but the machines are the kind you find in the ladies room. She's calling it "Outsider Art in a Box". There's one locally, but I haven't seen it yet. I will be going into Vancouver on Sunday and I will have to check it out then. Because the size of the machine is smaller, the art pieces will have to be smaller, but I am curious to see what's in it. I'll get back to you on that.

Thanks Jess for the artsy treats! I will send you something from ours!


Mary Stanley said...

How cool! I'd read about those too but have never soon one. Can't wait to hear about the one in Vancouver.

Marina of Printable Expressions said...

I to read about them at there inception...it's great to see they are actually out there. Hey Lelainia...love stopping by, you're always so busy with such great things. Take care!

Heatherly said...


I did the same thing! Except I am lucky enough to have one in my city! Here's what I got from the machine:


Anonymous said...

Aren't these just the coolest ideas?? I will have to see if we have one of these machines somewhere in the area. Frankly, I'd be totally surprised as I don't think of conservative Richmond going in for this kind of a thing.

I just LOVE the painted wood block! How clever is that??