Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Kapitaal: a bad trip through consumer society

By Jérôme E. Roos 
June 1, 2011 

This award-winning typo-animation gives a clear impression of the immense visual bombardment we are confronted with in our lives every single day.

Commissioned by Museum De Beyerd (now the Graphic Design Museum) in Breda, the Netherlands, this short video animation takes you on a trip through consumer society, where, on a day-to-day basis, we are confronted by an overwhelming amount of visual stimuli.

What’s particularly striking about this video is how it strips down the content of our world to its bare essentials. Under today’s conditions of ‘cultural capitalism‘, brands have become fetishized, social relations reified and human beings almost entirely depersonalized. Life in such a world can be profoundly alienating.

This visualization very powerfully conveys the nightmarish loss of meaning and purpose that this ‘commodification‘ of society brings about. When all that presents itself to consciousness is brands and marketing slogans, what’s left of the real world is just a gaping void, derived of any meaning or substance.

As the makers of the animation point out, “due to the immense scale of the visual bombardment, the commercial effectiveness has become utterly dubious.” Yet we appear to be stuck in limbo, aimlessly bombarding each other (and ourselves) with information in a futile attempt to accumulate even more meaninglessness.

Watch it and see for yourself!


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