Matt Benedetto is a product designer that I admire. In his on-going project, Unnecessary Inventions, he solves non-existing problems by creating humorous or satirical products that nobody really asks for. The products are all fake one-off inventions that solve a very niche problem, like mouth curtains for people who chew with their mouth open, or a silicon comb that is made to look like fingers. He creates his products using diverse methods like 3D-printing, sewing, laser cutting, mold making, and working with traditional tools in his workshop. For every product he creates, he will document them well and have a photoshoot so they look like real products, which are then posted on the internet for people to admire and have a laugh. Some products and processes are even documented in video and are uploaded on Youtube.
Matt starts his process through writing down his observations and feelings, or when somebody emails him an idea. From there, he invents a product through a proper design process, starting from a sketch, 3D design, getting materials, and then making them. Even though his products are not real, his dedication to the process is admirable and I aspire to be like this for every project I do.
I also love the way he uses humour to engage product design. Even though his products are unnecessary, he expanded his viewer’s creativity through his ideas. I think this can help us all to be more creative in the way we see the world, and also in the way we tackle design problems. His works also let us question the ridiculousness of “novel” existing products and be more cynical about them. In the end, his “useless” inventions are useful in entertaining his audiences and feeding their imaginations, which I think is worth the effort he put in.