Rare Book & Manuscript Library

Sam Zell Automatons, 1999-2006

Sam Zell Automatons, 1999-2006

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Box 1 The Emperor Has No Clothes, 1999

(Sculptured bronze music Box featuring a figure of an unclothed emperor standing atop a pile of copies of theWall Street Journalaround which is a ribbon that lists many new tech companies. A small figure (a newsboy, perhaps) stands next to the pile. The sculpture sits on a square cube base.)

Box 2 No Free Lunch, 2000

(A man holding a laptop and briefcase walks a tightrope between large yen and dollar currency signs floating in a sea containing smaller currency signs and an alligator whose upper jaw is made of a car, and a golden crown. The man is looking at himself in a mirror, with "caveat emptor' on the frame, which is resting on a barrel on which sits a jester/fool. The sculpture sits on a round base. When turned on, the headlights in the alligator car head glow and the mirror reflects a lion's head.)

Box 3 The Engine That Can, 2001

(Train on railway tracks. Train is a hybrid of a boat, airplane, locomotive, and truck with arms that go from train to wheels. It is towing a car containing a collection of skyscrapers. It sits on a rectangular base meant to look like carved rock with a hand at each corner, holding a hammer, lightning bolts, a log, and a sheaf of wheat. )

Box 4 Get Over It, 2002

(A naked man stands on a brass measurement face of some kind, turning a crank connected to a small wheel, which is connected to a large wheel, which is connected to a sand-filled hour glass. The images is drawn from J. C. Leyendecker's (American Golden Age Illustrator, 1874-1951) "Strength and service turning the wheel of progress." When turned on, the figure turns the crank, turning over the hourglass.)

Box 5 Wired Exports, 2003

(Terrestrial golden globe at the center of a compass, attached to a sextant. When turned on the globe and device parts all rotate. Sits on a cube base with elephant heads at each corner.)

Box 6 This Land, 2004

(Statue of Liberty's verdigrised arm holding a golden flamed torch, attached to the pedestal of the statue. When turned on, a lighted zipper moves the words to the Declaration of Independence around the base. )

Box 7 The Theory of Relativity, 2005

(Man stands with a closed umbrella in the left hand while extending right hand palm up looking for rain. He is surrounded by 24 piles of coins. Sculpture sits on a partially founded base with a two-sided gauge indicating "supply" and "yield".)

Box 8 SarBox, 2006

(Gold stock-ticker Box sits in an oval glass vitrine on a base with the words "compliance", "honestly", "integrity", "truth:, "capital flight", "liability", "audit compliance. Beneath these words is "America" and the "1" from the dollar bill. This all sits on a round wooden base with two hands with the letters "SBOX" on the fingers. When turned on, the ticker turns and tape comes out, and then retracts at end.)