Artist and activist Steve Lambert’s traveling piece Capitalism Works For Me! is a large illuminated sign and a voting podium. You vote “yes” or “no” on whether capitalism works for you and the results are tallied and displayed on the sign — in real time. This weekend, it was installed in Times Square, on Broadway between 46th & 47th Streets.
This work has been previously installed in nine other cities including Cleveland, Boston and Los Angeles, but those locations pale in comparison to the behemoth of competing signs in the commerce hot spot of Times Square. The location very much functioning as a representation of capitalism itself.
Passersby (an estimated 13,000 people pass through Times Square every hour) are encouraged to cast their vote by hitting either the true or false button at the podium, and their answers are posted on the sign’s scoreboard. Like much of Lambert’s work, it’s meant to be a playful, tongue-in-cheek way to generate discussion around a serious topic.
"Whether or not it works for you or it doesn't work for you, almost everyone I have talked to can imagine ways how it can be better," Lambert said. "So the sign is really bait for people's imagination."