Art out of a vending machine, it’s Art-o-mat!

Art-o-mat is the brainchild of Clark Whittington. In 1997, at an art show in Winston-Salem, NC, Whittington used a recently banned cigarette machine to sell his black & white photographs for $1 each. Art-o-mat was such a success, that steps were taken to grow the idea. Gallery owner Cynthia Giles introduced Whittington to a handful of other local artists and Artists in Cellophane was formed. Artists in Cellophane is now the sponsoring organization of Art-o-mat. Its mission is to encourage art consumption by combining the worlds of art and commerce in an innovative form. They believe “that art should be progressive, yet personal and approachable.”
You can see some of the art that the machines dispense here. We think the big draw of Art-o-mat is the designs of the machines themselves. It’s clear that they were cigarette vending machines at one time, but the altered colors and details are much more lush and charming. Who wouldn’t want one of these around to admire, even if you didn’t have a buck to spend?

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