CES 2012: Nights On White Crutches

by Jason Toon

Most booths at CES (like the Woot booth) are essentially utilitarian. They're supposed to be a pleasant place to have your meetings or display your wares, with the emphasis on the meetings and the wares. And there's nothing wrong with that.

Then there are the booths that show the unmistakable imprint of a designer's inner maniac, working up some over-the-top extravaganza bearing scant relation to the company's products or services. So it was with one of my favorite booth displays this year.

 

When Griffin Technology asked themselves "How can we best promote our line of iPhone and iPad cases?", they answered themselves "With a window full of junk we painted white." The result looks like the set of Sanford & Son as designed by Yoko Ono...

The string-art BUSINESS SOLUTIONS sign is a cute touch, but the all-star cast here is the salvage heap of whitewashed rummage. What did they paint white, you ask? More like what didn't they paint white, amirite? Let's see, we've got some crutches...

 

...a trumpet, some building blocks, a child's desk...

 

...some globes, some books,

 

...and a typewriter, and a sewing machine.

 

The designer did toss some token Griffin iPad cases onto a stack of old white suitcases, but who's going to notice them behind Puffy's accountant's adding machine there?

 

I don't use Q-Tips or cotton balls; I just keep them around to complement my creepy medical bust.

 

OK, so I don't pretend for two minutes to understand what the designer was thinking. But my white hat is off to he, she, or them. Not only do I deeply admire anyone who can convince their businessman boss to spend company time and money to do something completely crazy and borderline pointless, but this anonymous auteur deserves my thanks for making CES a little less monotonous. I don't say this about many booths, but I can't wait to see what Griffin Technology does next year. Sing it with me now: BECAUSE I LOVE YOU.... I-I-I-I LO-OO-OOVE YOOOU...

We see our CES 2012 coverage and we want to paint it black.