dan tobin smith and his rainbow kipple

As part of 2014’s London Design Festival, photographer Dan Tobin Smith has filled his East London studio with other people’s donated junk meticulously arranged according to the colour spectrum. A big fan of the 1968 novel Do Androids Dream of...

by Francesca Dunn
08 September 2014, 5:05pm

Dan Tobin Smith

What is the first law of kipple?
The first law of kipple is that kipple drives out non-kipple. 

What is your favourite tipple?
British beer. 

Which is best, Do Androids Dream of Electronic Sheep or Blade Runner?
Two different beasts really, both great. 

You reference thermodynamics. What are the key laws?
The first law of Thermodynamics says you cannot create or destroy energy, just change it from one kind to another. The second law says as that energy is used/changed it will increase the amount of disorder in a system (the universe) from a hot ordered state to a cold disordered one, the way a neglected cup of tea goes from being hot to cold and the way the universe goes from being extremely hot and dense (just after the big bang) to being cold and spread out. Eventually the amount of useful energy you can extract to fuel any kind of process from the burning of a star to the growing of a plant will run out and the universe will enter a heat death where everything is the same (low) temperature. 

Why did you start arranging things chromatically?
I've been doing similar things for 8 years or so. I like the way it makes objects meld into one another. 

Do you find kipple stressful?
Yes, and there is so much in the studio! My studio manager Danielle says it smells of Quasar. 

What was your favourite piece of kipple donated?
30 years worth of bus passes. 

How tidy is your home?
Pretty tidy. 

Who is your all-time favourite android?
Pris from Blade Runner. 

Often your works could be achieved easily by using photoshop, are you ever tempted?
I don't like sitting down for too long. 

What's your favourite song with a colour in the title?
There are too many, but Country Blues by Doc Watson is great. 


Text Francesca Dunn
Images courtesy Dan Tobin Smith
The First Law of Kipple will be held at Dan Tobin Smith Studio, 52c Whitmore Road, London N1 5QG from 13 - 21 September 2014. Free entry.

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