By Sonam Chaturvedi
Boredom, anticipation, purposeless walking, contemplation, hibernation, lingering, all these acts are alien to the capitalist human, and symbolize a glitch or an error in the functioning of a ‘normal’ life. Turbo capitalism, which has led to economic acceleration and massive alienation within developed societies, has gained momentum in the past decades and is spreading its roots in developing nations. With this form of disproportionate and biased expansion leading to feelings of isolated existence, we witness a drastic temporal-spatial shrinkage, where time has been commodified as a thing to be saved – precious, limited – and its partakers are always in a hurry to accumulate more money by saving more time. Temporal shrinkage occurs concurrently with spatial shrinkage, as spaces are designed to make consumption more compact, quick and easily accessible, through supermarkets, malls, distant jobs, e-commerce etc. The prospect of not knowing what will happen next year is a nightmare, or just sitting leisurely and not filling time with purpose, is considered as sheer wastage of time.
© Sonam Chaturvedi
Here, the vending machine is the closest embodiment of capitalism’s spatial and temporal shrinkage. KAIROI, a time-sensitive vending machine
, highlights the importance of unoccupied time; it is created as an attempt to slow down our acceleration to the point of contemplation, in order to gain (monetarily) free consumable products. Instead of money, it takes time as an input; one has to stand in front of the machine with ones finger on the simulated-biometric scanner, and ‘spend’ time to receive a product.
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