Art group Temporary Services worked with an artist named Angelo who is incarcerated in California to create a book containing Angelo's illustrations of inventions made by prisoners, from chess pieces fashioned from toilet paper and sugar water to a battery-operated tattoo gun (shown here) to a "muff bag" (sex doll). Temporary Services also recreated many of the inventions for exhibition based on Angelo's drawings. From Angelo's introduction to the book:
"Writing this book was a revelation. To be able to present these examples of human inventiveness to you, I had first to discover this technology all over again. If some of what’s presented here seems unimpressive, keep in mind that deprivation is a way of life in prison. Even the simplest of innovations presents unusual challenges, not just to make an object but in some instances to create the tools to make it and find the materials to make it from. The prison environment is designed and administered for the purpose of suppressing such inventiveness. Officially, the devices described here are considered contraband, subject to confiscation in routine cell searches. But inmates are resilient if nothing else—what’s taken today will be remade by tomorrow, and the cycle goes on and on."Link (via Near, Near Future)
David Pescovitz is Boing Boing's co-editor/managing partner. He's also a research director at Institute for the Future. On Instagram, he's @pesco.