benj gerdes

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Room of the Sun

by Benj Gerdes & Jennifer Hayashida

16mm film installation, Forthcoming 2009

A looped 16mm film installation that takes as its point of departure Swedish “Match King” Ivar Kreuger, whose privatization of financial crisis management strategies bears a direct relation to late-twentieth century policies implemented by the IMF and WTO. Between 1917 and 1932, Kreuger capitalized on shifts in global financial markets to control over 200 companies and establish matchstick monopolies in at least 34 countries. The project takes its name from Krueger’s winter garden in the Park Avenue penthouse he occupied at the height of his wealth; the title both metaphorizes the effect of matchstick illumination and refers to Kreuger’s Promethean self-mythologizing as a monopoly capitalist able to transcend nature.

Note: during certain phases of our working process this title also applied to our single-channel video essay on Kreuger.  For information on that piece, please see the page for Strike Anywhere.

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Room of the Sun | 2009 | projects