Vending machine

Idea/text for installation, 2014

Standing lost in the corner of an empty room is the copy of an ordinary looking vending machine. Visitors receive a coin (without any marks, a clean surface) before entering the room and can use it to buy something of the machine. Then, when looking to buy, the visitor will discover the abnormal aspect embodying the machine. The place behind the glass, were in other cases objects/food are numbered and displayed, is in this instance empty. It shows the bars with the numbers in chronological order, yet nothing more. So in reality the thought comes to mind that one is buying thin air/nothing. This is nevertheless only a facade.

The numbers are explained beneath the section were the visitors insert their coins. Instead of buying material goods like food, this vending machine (a symbol for consumerism) sells values/qualities in life that most people often find unpricable. Here they are buyable an the transformation of the immaterial into the material takes new heights. When the coin is inserted, the machine will do its work and grab some of this air, that is presented as a particular value, and gives this to the customer.


This act of buying seemingly untouchable things refers to the ridicule idea that in today’s societies often dares to occur, that everything can be bought, that money is power, happiness, and that it is the most important aspect of life. Here, money gets placed at a level that is a step higher than the level of the buyable qualities. It is the active component, they are the passive figurants that undergo the play/the buying. With this installation I want people to overthink this idea of ‘monetary dominance’, to question and question theirselves, to discuss. It is also a remark on the ridiculous prices paid (millions) for artworks, the perversity of some auction practices, the speculative nature of the art market, art as an financial investment.


The values to be sold are the following:


-Freedom (of body and mind)

-Equality (balance)

-Peace (inner and outer)

-Health (body and mind)

-Strenght (body and mind)

-Intelligence (at multiple levels)

-Coherence (family, friends, people)

-Love (for him/her/them, for nature/culture)

-Creativity (act of creation)

-Skill (to become better at)

-Time (stretch or shorten)

-Hope (to live dreams, to wonder)