Lets say you were trapped in communist-era Poland and needed to do some farming. Waiting for The State to provide you an unreliable proletarian tractor was out of the question. Because, after all, you wanted to be able to actually grow the grain that would get transformed into the wodka that would make your life bearable. So what did you do? Why, you built your own mechanized tiller of the soil, of course. That's just what enterprising farmers did in the pre-Solidarity days. The results of their homebrewed engineering have been cataloged and assembled in a new exhibit at the Zak Gallery in Berlin. "Machines," true to its title, is an exhibit of just that: the contraptions Joe Poland put together in the totalitarian past—and may still use to get things done.
Often cobbled together from bits and pieces of other machines, these things are obviously workhorses, even if they aren't pretty. Some even contain bits from scrapped war machines. We though the Soviet era Belarus pops picked up a while back was crude, but this kind of raises (lowers?) backwoods ingenuity to a whole new level. Bravo, oppressed Soviet Bloc agrarians! [via We Make Money Not Art