HDTV on the Half Shell

“Ah, is that the Boticelli Venus hanging there in your living room?” “Yes, but let’s watch the SuperBowl so wait just a moment while I push this button to make the painting roll up and reveal my flat screen television!”

My friend and colleague Bruce Berkoff likes to refer to the WAF of flat panel TVs in the home: the Wife Acceptance Factor. (I adhere to the more context appropriate and inclusive SOFA: Significant Other Factor of Acceptance.) Try as hard as they might, TV manufacturers have yet to come up with a design that doesn’t cause at least one home decorator to declare that “you’re not hanging that ugly hunk of plastic in this room, buster!” Well, Media Decor has come up with a new solution to the problem.

Their new Ecco Series lets you pair a picture frame with a work of art, ranging from Botticelli’s “Birth of Venus ” to contemporary abstracts. You pick from four different frame colors, and choose between two sizes, and voila! You get your own customized solution. An RF remote control lets you wind the painting up or down, and the frame is battery powered so there is no wiring required.

Hiding your flat screen behind a painting starts at just under $1,500, which means that it could cost more than twice as much as the TV you put behind it, but for some folks, that’s a small price to pay to keep the home decorator happy.