Sometimes you just have to stop asking “why” and enjoy something for what it is. The Oncle Sam pictured above is an elaborate device that pops corn, one kernel at a time. That’s… all it does. It was recently presented by Laurent Beirnaert, Pierre Bouvier and Paul Tubiana as part of the ‘low-tech factory’ exhibition at Designers’ Saturday in Langenthal, Switzerland. When you turn a handle at the bottom, a single kernel falls into a metal cooking receptacle where it is heated in oil, above a candle, until it pops. There’s some salting going on as well. The popped kernel then falls into another glass cup where you can retrieve it and enjoy it. It’s all pretty grandiose, and pretty awesome.
Ok… you’re still wondering “why”. The closest we have to an explanation is this:
The work celebrates and values the means by which a product is created – slowing down a type of manufacture that is usually en masse to a visual spectacle that can be appreciated, acknowledged and savored.
Right, so it’s a piece of art. That’s nice. If you want to know what it looks like in action, hit the jump for a totally worthwhile video.