What if the game of capitalism and showing off your wealth was a real game?
That is a question the Brooklyn art group MSCHF sought to answer with an installation at this year's Miami Art Basel, one of the world's most premiere—and spendy—art festivals.
The set up of the interactive piece is this: it's a regular ATM that you can take money out of, but as you're doing so, the ATM will take a picture of you, note your bank balance, and put both picture and balance on a "leaderboard" above the ATM for everyone to see.
It's supposed to be reminiscent of old arcade games, including slightly hokey animations with voice-overs that appear while the ATM is processing the photo and balance into the piece.
Talking with CNN, co-founder of MSCHF Daniel Greenberg said placing this installation at Art Basel was a careful choice.
"From its conception, we had mentally earmarked this work for a location like Miami Basel, a place where there is a dense concentration of people renting Lamborghinis and wearing Rolexes."
"These are analogous implicit gestures to the ATM Leaderboard's explicit one."
You can see the art installation at work in this video.
This ATM Shows Your Balance and Photo to EVERYBODY! | Art Basel 2022youtu.be
In the video, people were excited to engage with the piece of public art, lining up to take out cash—it's a functioning ATM—and wind up on the leaderboard.
Many had amounts smaller than $100 in their accounts but seem excited by the prospect of playing anyway. Throughout the video, the anonymous leader on the board, a man wearing a pink shirt with over $2 million in his account, remained on top.
People commented on the art piece and the point it was trying to address.
Yet others saw this leaderboard as an opportunity, whether for matrimony or grand larceny it still up for debate.
Many people commented on the leader of the board, the man in the pink shirt.
Some were impressed by the amount, some less so by the idea of keeping that much money in a mere checking account.
The piece remains up, so maybe the number one spot will get taken by someone else who's keeping over $2 million in their checking account.
At the very least, it sure is keeping people talking.