An old friend of mine has a new art project — stuffed animal lamps.
Simple concept, elegant execution. A grafitti artist friend adds some decoration. There are a ton of them displayed here; I had trouble picking out my favorite one (I also like the sleeping camo guy, and the spiderman).
I like the marriage of functional and frivolous. I’m also reminded of a case I worked on as a law clerk for a judge, about whether it is legal to copyright a Halloween costume. The law in this area turned out to be completely incoherent, based on something called the “conceptual severability” test — the idea was that you could not copyright “functional” things, but if you could “conceptually sever” the design from the functional aspect of the object, you could copyright the design. Of course this test posed an issue for costumes — what’s the function? The law, of course, had an answer: masquerading! Anyway the details were absurd — for example, some aspects of the test had to do with the “plushness” of the object, and whether it could stand on its own (hat) or needed to be on something to assume its shape (glove).
Somewhat of a digression, but these lamps got me thinking about that — is the function just lighting, or also cuteness?