The Book Aging Machine

02.22.12 Marina Galperina

Archive of Years to Come is a great, depressing, zeitgeisty piece of art from Royal College of Art student Koby Barhad. It is, essentially, “a book-aging machine, a chrono-chamber,” a system of capsules, tubes and mechanics that bombards a print media specimen — pssst, they’re called “books” — with various environmental factors. Four hours in the chamber is really like a year outside.

Yes, Koby did invent “a time machine” of sorts. “The work explores the tendency to glorify the obsolete,” he says, mercilessly. Did he build an ironic pedestal upon which to slowly exterminate the paper victim, for all to see? Is he just fucking with us and humiliating our fetishism for media forms of yore? Well, fuck you, Koby. I like books, the IRL ones… Still, nice work there.

Related: $5,000,000 of Pirated Files on a Hard-Drive, an Art Piece