MOC was the home of the Original Art-o-mat®
The inspiration for Art-o-mat® came to artist Clark Whittington while observing a friend who had a Pavlovian reaction to the crinkle of cellophane. When Whittington's friend heard someone opening a snack, he had the uncontrollable urge to have one too.
In 1997, Whittington was set to have a solo art show at a local cafe, Penny Universitie (later Mary's Of Course Café). This is when Whittington used a recently-banned cigarette machine to create the first Artomat. In June 1997, it was installed, along with 12 of his paintings. The machine sold Whittington's black & white photographs for $1.00 each. The picture to the right is the actual machine that dispensed at Penny Universitie and Mary's Of Course Café!
This art show was scheduled to be dismantled in July 1997. However, Cynthia Giles (owner of the Penny Universitie) loved the machine and asked that it stay permanently. When Mary moved into the space, she concured and the machine remained unaltered in its original location for ten more years. Today it has been retired to Whittington's collection of items for what we hope might be an actual Art-o-mat® museum for future generations! Come check out the super-cool NEW Art-o-mat machine we have at Breakfast Of Course!