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German Toast by Soxy Fleming

Photographic Prints

Available to buy on…


Featured on a card… in a toaster… in the buyers booth

This toaster object was the 2009 winner of the Biblio Art competition run in Port Fairy Australia by Blarney Books and Art Port Fairy
read more here

Artwork Description

The interior mechanism of a vintage toaster has had a short, fake electrical cord attached complete with plug. Tied to the end of the cord near the plug are two folded paper pieces (a paper plane and a game of chance) made from pages of the German Dictionary. The Dictionary itself has been split in two and each half bound with nylon filament to keep the pages and covers together (creating two discrete blocks or pieces of “toast”). These have been inserted in the toast slots. Also in one of the toast slots is a booklet made from five original pages torn from the Dictionary which have German words written on them in pen and ink. The cover of this booklet is made from a scan of the real cover. This booklet has been duplicated in the form of a miniature zine which hangs from the exterior of the toaster as a swing tag. The zine represents a puzzle game in which all information is present to translate the German pen and ink writing (with some effort from the observer).

Artist’s Statement

A foreign language may be remote and weird to us while being normal and everyday in its native setting. We can laugh about, and talk in, silly accents, use “pretend” foreign language or be tortured by strict procedures in old school teaching fashion. The toaster transcends cultural differences and lives in every kitchen, yet retains a sweet attraction…a toy toaster is an appealing thing and retro toasters become objects of desire. Of course, the search for the perfect toaster-of-long-life is never ending…. In combining the everyday retro kitchen object (albeit in an unusual presentation) with foreign language the stage is set for investigation by the curious and playful. Combining graphic techniques old and new (pen and ink writing and scans of a 3 dimensional book) the object arrangement is completed – the addition of the resulting puzzle zine as a swing tag adds to the consumable image of the everyday kitchen appliance and allows the observer to participate in a timely word finding game.

Soxy moves between different media, recycling, assembling, capturing and bringing previously unseen things to the surface.
If she’s not creating something visual she will be singing and making music….

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  • jemimalovesbigted
    jemimalovesbigtedover 5 years ago

    Love it!

  • never throw out a dead toaster….

    – Soxy Fleming

  • Paul Rees-Jones
    Paul Rees-Jonesover 5 years ago

    Absolutely freaking brilliant!
    : { )}

  • what a compliment! hope the judges think so too…thank you!

    – Soxy Fleming

  • Lisa Brower
    Lisa Browerover 5 years ago

    OOh, I like this. some thought actually happened!! I like!!! :) xx

  • makes me wonder a bit about my thoughts though…..: )
    thank you!

    – Soxy Fleming

  • Zolton
    Zoltonover 5 years ago

    This is so cool! Thanks for giving your explanation.

  • it has been a fantastic fun wacky time doing all of these pieces for the competition. This one seems to be the most popular but the garden of folly really is the most involved and amusing…it’s just that you have to see it in person….and read the quotes. I’m not giving them all away here (and they are really hilarious!)

    – Soxy Fleming

  • donnamalone
    donnamaloneover 5 years ago

    so great! am coming back to look and read in more detail. Good Luck!

  • thanks Donna, glad you like it.

    – Soxy Fleming

  • ys-eye
    ys-eyeover 5 years ago

    Fantastic! Love this piece, and the photo of it is phenomenal as well, really shows it off well!

  • the photo is ok….I had trouble with the lighting…this one is probably the most likely to win, even though the garden is more special to me. the toaster is an appealing device and not many people toast their german dictionaries!

    – Soxy Fleming

  • Jon Burke
    Jon Burkeover 5 years ago

    This is more like Dieselpunk than Steampunk, but I thought it was so creative and well thought out that it deserved an honorary position in the Steampunk group. Thanks for your contribution!

  • guess it does require electricity…sort of…. thank you!

    – Soxy Fleming

  • mmargot
    mmargotover 5 years ago

    Magnificently Soxy!

  • my dearest mm you would indeed love all of these silly creations

    – Soxy Fleming

  • R. E. Nixon
    R. E. Nixonover 5 years ago

    That’s quite good. It’s commercial, and that’s not a put-down. I think this likely to sell as stock and would suggest you putting it out there as such.

  • thanks…it will be for sale during the exhibition….I’ve been joking with an rb friend about offering it to the Pompidou Centre in Paris…but I’m really just hoping it will win me the $1000 (and maybe get a picture in a local paper)

    – Soxy Fleming

  • do you think I should make this available as art here? I wasn’t super happy with the DOF in this shot, I have others from different angles….I can sort of see it might be appealing a s a card…what do you think?

    – Soxy Fleming

  • R. E. Nixon
    R. E. Nixonover 5 years ago

    I’d be happy to talk about the depth-of-field issue, making it available as art and etc., but I’m not sure what the depth-of-field problem is to you. What are your concerns as to this?

    As to making it available as art-for-sale, I think you should. Art is a slippery concept; yet, you should be able to make a living at doing what inspires you. Best to make it without compromise, but life ain’t like that. It’s just my opinion, but I think it’s the intersection of commerce and art that makes things interesting and actually makes a statement that people might notice. If you produce in a vacuum and no-one sees it what are you really doing?

  • Producing in a vacuum and not being seen doesn’t really worry me, the producing is the important thing to me. It’s like therapy and my expression….I like to share it with others but that isn’t essential.
    That said, I am actually getting stuff out there now, in my own way and time.

    DOF …..I guess I just don’t like the lever and bits on the other end being out of focus….I was a bit impatient taking the shots (which I had to send off to have the object accepted into the competition. It was natural light and variable as the clouds moved across, I didn’t use a tripod and I should have (just being a bit picky I guess). The toaster is 350km away now so I can’t re-shoot just now.

    what I am asking is, apart from selling the actual object, you think a photo is interesting as art too?

    I’ll try making it for sale and see what I think and I’ll look through the other shots and see if there is one I’m happier with.
    thanks for your considered comments

    – Soxy Fleming

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