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The latest in artistic explorations of human interaction with and symbolism in retail comes from artist Randy Regier, whose newest installation in Portland, Maine, is NuPenny, the coolest grown-up toy store ever—that's not actually a functional store.
Regier's recreated the entire toy store experience—in gray scale. The merchandise is all original—and inspired by literature, 20th-century American poetry, and song lyrics. Included on-site are all the accoutrements of retail: a cash register, signs, shelves.
But the store is always locked. Its interior can only be seen through the windows.
[P]erhaps most compelling for me was to attempt to create a physical place and occurrence that appears as if in a dream—familiar and believable yet somehow out of our grasp—in the physical sense but also slightly out of reach of our collective memory. Because of this the door of the NuPenny store is always locked and all text has been rendered in Teletype punch-tape code. The toys are all original constructions of mine; none of the toys are or were vintage playthings, nor are any of them made from toy parts. All toys in my NuPenny store are manufactured from 20th century industrial, scientific and household flotsam and jetsam, and from scratch when necessary.· NuPenny toy store [Official Site]
· Randy Regier [Official Site]
· Photos of amazing NuPenny toy store in Portland, Maine [Boing Boing]