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Shu Lea Cheang’s Garlic=Rich Air was an interactive online project that anticipated the year 2030 as a postcapitalist society where the global economy and currencies have collapsed and network media has nearly crashed. In this future world, organic garlic is the new social currency–bought, sold, and traded to establish a new, free media trading system.
Garlic=Rich Air set forth a monetary relationship between URL information and virtual garlic. Visitors were invited to participate online by submitting various URL addresses in return for virtual garlic, or “G,” as Cheang put it. At the close of the G-Mart, virtual “G” was cashed in for real garlic, a commodity that is desired and wholly revered in the year 2030.