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  • Café of Equivalent$

Kennard, Peter, 2009, Art or design object, Café of Equivalent$

Abstract or Description:

Taking the form of a soup kiosk, Café of Equivalent$ was a public art work set up during lunch hour in Leadenhall Market in the heart of London’s financial district. Playing with the fabrication of value in the global capitalist financial system, Kennard and his sometime collaborator, Cat Picton Phillipps, working as kennardphillipps, engaged city workers with some simple ‘truth derivatives’, equating their salaried/bonus income with the cost of lunch for a worker in the producing countries, i.e. Mozambique, Brazil, Indonesia, Bangladesh.
Drawing on UN Reports on poverty and documents from the New Internationalist, the work materialises global disparities of wealth between developed and impoverished nations. For example, the cost of soup and bread in Mozambique for a worker earning $2 a day is 20 cents, or 10% of the daily wage – the equivalent to £111.20 for soup and bread for a bonus-earning banker.
Kennardphillipps adorned the kiosk with images of workers printed on the Financial Times share price pages. This montage produced a dialectical image in which the abstract series of numbers became a real ground of toil and labour. A selection of these newspaper photomontages were purchased in 2012 by the V&A Museum, and exhibited in the New Acquisitions Gallery, May 2012–February 2013.
Cafe of Equivalent$ was first commissioned by Arts Admin, funded by the Arts Council. The project was exhibited at the Design Museum, London for the Brit Insurance Design Awards as one of the top 100 international designs for 2010. The newspaper photomontages were shown in group exhibitions including ‘Occupy Everything’ at Hales Gallery (2012), ‘Fragments from a Broken World Biennial’ National Photographic Archive, Dublin (2010), and as a series of large-scale outdoor posters commissioned by Artwall Prague (2012).

Contributors:
ContributionNameRCA ID
AuthorPicton Phillips, CatUNSPECIFIED
Subjects: Creative Arts and Design > W100 Fine Art
School or Centre: School of Fine Art
Date Deposited: 11 Nov 2013 11:08
Last Modified: 07 Feb 2014 10:24
URI: http://researchonline.rca.ac.uk/id/eprint/1537

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