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Tom Sachs Shows His Bizarre Boomboxes In New Retrospective Show

Tom Sachs’s longstanding fixation with boomboxes comes to its logical conclusion.

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In the past, artist and designer Tom Sachs has built a McDonald’s out of wood and office furniture out of phone books, to name just a few of his wacky art projects. In 2012, he created a massive installation simulating a trip to Mars, taking up the entirety of the Armory building.

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Often, these shows included a handcrafted boombox of some sort, and his current retrospective at The Contemporary Austin will showcase his inventive, functioning pieces. These quirky designs include a box built to resemble the moon lander, and another carved out of a cinder block.

“I have been making boom boxes since childhood,” Sachs said in the show’s press release. “I hooked my Sony Walkman up to a set of mini speakers and velcroed them to a block of scrap plywood. It was a clusterfuck of wires.”

Each piece in the show is loaded with a unique playlist curated by Sachs’s musician friends. Like his other works, none of his DIY craftsmanship is hidden or smoothed over after construction, giving these pieces a animated, vital feel. Boombox Retrospective is open now, and will run till April 19.

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I'm a writer living in Bushwick, Brooklyn. Interests include social justice, cats, and the future.

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