When my boyfriend offered me a plush toy for Christmas i was appalled: did i really know that guy who had this super cheesy idea to offer me a plus toy for xmas? Alas! I can’t understand what happened to me. If you’ve met me you might know that now wherever i go, Kaikai Kiki goes. I bought him a fake mobile phone, a fake golden tooth and a sleeping mask.
The upcoming exhibition Me and My Character at Platform21 investigates the emotional bond people have with their nonliving companions. In researching designer toys and character design, Platform 21 found a hidden world where creators, users, professionals and amateurs come together, united by their attraction to these creatures.
The exhibition consists of testimonials by character owners, collectors and designers about their plush friends, accompanied by photos, descriptions, videos, and many toys lent by their owner.
Platform 21 has also adopted its own character: Leaflet, created by one of my favourite Japanese artists, Akinori Oishi. Leaflet is now in good hands at the PictoOrphanage in Berlin. PictoOrphanage opened its gates in 2000 to all abandoned creatures in a bid to save them from falling into oblivion. Today they are on package designs, shop signs or posters, but tomorrow, who knows? The PictoOrphanage pair-up the abandoned orphans with ideally-suited foster parents.
Les Petits Bonhommes by Akinori Oishi
Me and My Character: Cuddly Toys, Monsters and Robots runs 13 July-Sunday 27 August, at Platform21, in Amsterdam.