Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Shake It, Baby

I present this object as a sculpture, but it probably has more meaning as a cultural artifact.

This is a quintessentially American object, a device that "harnessed technology" and promised self-improvement without effort. You pry open the powerful jaws to clamp the contraption around your midsection, turn it on and enjoy a vigorous shaking action. Lose weight and tone muscles without breaking a sweat!

Well, maybe not so much with the weight loss, except in the wallet region.

It's covered with the same stuff as old diner restaurant booths and dinette chairs, attached with upholstery tacks.

The entrepreneurial woman who owned the little cottage industry that made it also produced a device for reducing facial wrinkles by electric shock. Not surprisingly, she was very successful and retired wealthy.

It's a big hit at parties, and when not in use looks great with a spotlight on it .

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