We have always considered and collected these commercial masks and helmets as industries tribal art. Examples can be elegant in their simplicity or bazaar and complex. They are always unique, suprising and filled with personality.
1933 Philips 834A “Knuckle of Ham” Radio
The Philips model 834A of 1933 was variously called in Dutch a 'knuckle of ham' or 'Easter' radio. In English it was referred to as a 'cathedral', a general name applied to all radio sets of vaguely gothic form. Philips were one of the earliest radio manufacturers to experiment seriously with plastics, though many others also took advantage of the expiry in 1927 of Leo Baekeland's original patent for Bakelite (a thermosetting plastic - phenol formaldehyde resin moulded under immense heat and pressure). This coincided with improvements in radio technology, while also serving to make the completed sets cheaper. Philips' version of Bakelite, Philite, was used to make the face of this set, while another material, Arbolite, a sort of plastic/paper laminate, forms the sides. Both materials are intended to imitate wood (a fact obvious in the naming of Arbolite), allowing it to blend in better with existing domestic interiors, while also being considerably cheaper and easier to mass produce than if using real wood. The radio has a hard to see hairline crack in the bakelite... $650