Synopses & Reviews
In airports, iPods, headphones and other technological gadgets are sold in vending machines; artists from London to Buenos Aires have converted cigarette vending machines to sell art; along New York City's St. Marks Place numerous kiosks provide "fresh food" for late-night snackers via, you guessed it, vending machines. Marketers have caught on to the trend, too. In Times Square, the clothing company Uniqlo launched a new clothing line by installing human models in vending machines, so passersby could see how the clothing looked out of its packaging.
There is no doubt that the Japanese lead the way when it comes to vending machines and the items they dispense. In cities and suburbs alike, vending machines in Japan are ubiquitous, providing everything from the expected (hot tea, food, candy) to the surprising (umbrellas, toilet paper, liquor, porn). Taking a cue from the Japanese, the growing trend to sell anything and everything via vending machines has caught on across the globe.
With photographs from all over the world and essays that track the development of vending machines over time, Vending Machines: Coined Consumerism serves as an intriguing, and mystifying, visual reference-point for every consumer on the go.
A holy water dispenser in ancient Greece serves as the first known historical reference to a vending machine. What a long way this invention has come! With our ever-growing desire to eliminate the cashier from the retail equation Vending Machines: Coined Consumerism documents the journey vending machines have made from ancient Greece to the consumer environments of today.