The MunNY Exhibit 2010
by Harry / May 22, 2010

An all too brief highlight of New York Designer Week this year was the MunNY show at the Ace hotel. Brief because it was one night only, starting at 9:00 PM on Saturday in a space that was rented immediately afterwards at 3:00 AM, for an SNL afterparty.


Joe Doucet and Chad Phillips asked 23 of New York's most well known and innovative designers to create one-of-a-kind interpretations of KidRobot's Munny figurine. Most interesting was the degree to which the designers unique style was apparent in the final works. Here are some of our favorites.


Paradoxically, by far the most popular Munny was created by a "non-designer" Frederick McSwain, whose day job is manager of the Capellini showroom in SoHo. His Ice Munny was the most impermanent of all those on show, not just because it was melting, but also because it was being shaved to make Snow Cones.


Marcus Tremonto's flatulent Sir Sylin B'Dedly Munny featured glow in the dark gas. This was actually on this heels of his Lightbot Munny, a recent series of smaller limited edition Munnys that also glow. Says Tremonto, "Whenever creating a character with MUNNY, I use light as the medium to define them. The imagery of the characters is taken from the iconography of vintage video games, sci-fi comics and cartoons."


Joe Doucet's cement Munny statue is complete with bird dropping and grassy plot.


Tobias Wong and Various Project's furry Angora Munny was in addition to Wong's homage to Front Design's Animal Things below.


Tobias Wong's Dear front girls (i heart you) Munny


Josee Lepage's Munny Cents was a scent, a perfume that smells like money. Says Josee, "Bare of everything, Munny needs an odor. Here's my interpretation of how Munny should smell. With the participation of scent curator Koan Jeff Baysa M.D., we've selected this fragrance designed to capture the essence of wealth. Dominated by credit and combined with a splash of cash + a soft note of coins and pennies we have 'MUNNY Cents' an unusual yet striking fragrance exclusive to MUNNY."


An international design week show wouldn't be complete without a Swarovski crystal encrusted element. Brad Ascalon's Crystal Munny is encrusted with tiny Swarovski crystals. Ascalon's approach for the MunNY project concentrated on a juxtaposition of materials, says he, "The MUNNY is such a beautiful, simple and iconic design made from nothing more than molded vinyl, a material which is inexpensive, yet extremely durable. I wanted to counter those qualities with a material that was expensive and fragile."


The Plasenfeffer Munny is based on military technology. Weeks' studio has been working with the U.S. military to develop a new method of camouflage called I.P.R.V. or Intersecting Planes Rotary Visibility. "I.P.R.V. is being used to create support structures for conning towers, water towers, and barriers. The system of irregular slotted planes allows for a stable structure with unusual forms while also confusing attackers' perception by changing the form of predictable objects. The methodology can also be applied to cultural icons such as the MUNNY."


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