Commodities involved: Fish for tricks
It’s a barter. The trainer has set the going rate. The Dolphin gets fish and the trainer sells that spectacle to the audience. I saw the dolphin in the lego pile and wondered what it could trade…
Commodities involved: Game. Money.
Tobi is earning the money he needs to buy the game. It’s teaching him values. That things don’t just turn up, you have to wait or earn things. Things happen so instantly you don’t always have to wait, so it’s important to learn those skills. It’s like a dance – when you’re both dancing to the same tune, the rhythm is easy. The exchange works. But it’s a deeper level than just an exchange.
Commodities involved: people are paying tickets to see the flying man
Half of the money goes to the ticket vendor and half goes to the flying man. When I saw the flying man I thought it might be cool to have a robbery scene that’s also got a trade in it.
Commodities involved: The cat, the dogs, a bat, an owl, the scorpion.
Someone is buying an expensive Persian cat with a sack of money. I like the way the cat jumps into the grass and runs away with its owner. I wanted to make something cute. It’s not that
dramatic. ‘I’ve just got a caa…aaat!'”
Commodities involved: LEGO heads.
“Moody Megan in the booth is angrily trading heads. I started putting the LEGO together and we had a conversation about the commodification of children in education, then I found the LEGO heads up in the box. I thought about trade and exchange not just being material objects but also intangible products as well as stuff on shelves… and products we don’t even realise are products… we just think that’s the way it is. I like the […]
Commodities involved: oranges, £1 coins, plastic bowls.
“There’s a fruit and veg stall near Finsbury Park. Everything is presented in white plastic bowls. They are all the same size. Each one’s contents cost £1. It’s a simple exchange. You pay. You go. The stall holder can tell you where in the world each bowl’s contents were grown. If you ask.”
Commodities involved: Smartphone, GPS location and identity/geotag data, Image file of the digital photo, Social media statistics, Generated data from online posting.
Here the man takes a smartphone photo of a chimpanzee in the park and posts it on Twitter. We imagined that 50,000 people re-posted this image. Who profits? The identity traders, the marketeers, the geodata traders. “This is a threshold moment between material things. I chose it because I don’t really understand how it works, but it does… because […]
Commodities involved: Second hand books, Used magazines, Good will
A circular, alternative economy where one book is exchanged for another in a gifting system based in obligation, that builds relations between humans (Marcel Maus). The book house is beautifully painted with inspirational quotes on it. Both the people who participate in this exchange and passersby are profiting. “I love books. I’m interested in the fact that it’s a postponed exchange – you don’t see the person you exchange […]
Commodities involved: Fine art, Aspirations, Exclusivity.
We were discussing Frieze Art Fair which prompted the question ‘who is art for?’ “Here the artist is profiting hopefully… The dealer. The gallery.” We wondered whether contemporary conceptual art will survive, and what is the importance of technique. We talked about social practice and who or what profits from that – the politics of social engineering.
Commodities involved: cash, gun, car, clothes
We were talking about trade and exchange in a wider sense and thinking about what kind of behaviour is provoked by wanting commodities. Here the man is standing next to a cash point and the thieves take both the money and his clothes. The trade is his life for his money.