Products As Press Releases

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I first came in touch with the idea of “products as movies” through the early work of Noam Toran. It was work that he created while at IVREA — which unfortunately is no longer visible anywhere on the Internet. I had a VHS tape of that work, but I appear top have lost it. Oh well.

Objects for Lonely Men by Noam is in the permanent collection of MoMA. It is wonderfully disturbing and clever. Note how it integrates the idea of physical “products” within the strange reality of a lonely man’s obsession with a famous French film. 

Fast forward to 2018, and I’m interested in videos that depict products as either fiction or as finished outcomes. Of course one of my favorite product videos has to be Apple’s Knowledge Navigator from 1987:

And in terms of weird future-fiction it was definitely Googlezon from 2004:

Or in a similarly dystopian (but super-accurate) way from 2003, there was the Scary Pizza piece from the ACLU:

But living in the here and now, I’m a fan of what we make out there in the technology landscape — specifically the heart and soul of what we attempt to create in a landscape of boxes and screens that beep and boop. I compiled the following list with Automattic Designer Filippo Di Trapani about a year ago.

Shopify x Facebook Messenger

Google Docs

Google Photos

Sonos You’re Better Than This

Medium Series

And for a few longform favorites

Let me know if you have any favorites in the comments below. —JM