Perry Hoberman
TRUSTED MAKES
We are living through an era of preposterous, almost inconceivable contradiction, a paradoxical world in which the most antithetical ideas and activities coexist in embarrassing proximity. This is a scientific and technological age that is characterized by the rapid growth of fanatical fundamentalism; an era of unimaginably horrific wars that seem to barely touch us; a moment when our planet is on the verge of a collapse that is totally ignored; and an age that has seen the massive redistribution of wealth, creating unimaginable poverty in the midst of an almost obscene abundance. Clearly, the only possible way these yawning chasms of paradox and bad faith can be bridged is with some really, really good PR.

The works in the series
Trusted Makes represent large cans (or small drums) of essential (if imaginary) consumer goods. Utilizing a tangible interface (that is, a physical interface that allows for direct manipulation of media), these objects exist in a state of continual flux. By projecting instead of printing the package design onto the product, the graphic elements of Trusted Makes are able to morph from one state to another, both under user control (as they are rotated) and on their own. This allows them to continually update and improve their packaging, making and retracting claims and promises.

Living as we do in an empire where we create our own reality, we clearly need packaging that can be perpetually revised to reflect that reality -- even as the underlying (substandard) merchandise remains unchanged. Each of these works represents some manifestation of the Ultimate Commodity; a product that makes sensational promises about its effectiveness, economy, and newness-- its sheer sexiness. Sadly, all these promises are made only to be broken. In an age where we'll buy anything with the right packaging, no matter how rancid, dangerous and distasteful,
Trusted Makes fabricate the best case possible for whatever's currently in stock.