Artist given $84,000 to recreate earlier work hands in blank canvases titled "Take the money and run"

Originally published at: Artist given $84,000 to recreate earlier work hands in blank canvases titled "Take the money and run" | Boing Boing


Too bad interest rates are so crappy right now. He could’ve put that money into a nice, safe account or cd for a few months and gotten a nice little “bonus” out of this.
I wonder what he did do with it. I hope he hasn’t been talking to Bernie Madoff…:wink:


The money is there, it’s just in bitcoin.


Did they forget to include a clause on the forfeiture of the benefit of time? I thought that kind of thing was standard boilerplate.


I was interested in the earlier work he was meant to replicate. Here’s one, “An Average Austrian Year Income,”

@lastchance haha! Later they’ll sell the new work as an nft, but when you open it on your phone, you’ll just think you have the flashlight app on. :joy:



84g might seem like a lot to most of us, but it’s tiny in today’s “art world.”


i am stunned by the sheer ballsiness it took to do this.


Good work, if ya can get it.


At least he’s not having to pay interest rates. Sort of like that joke about the person putting up their car for collateral so they could park their car for a year for less money spent.


Maybe the artist could have titled the canvas, “Ce n’est pas un jeton non fongible”?


It’s the combined average annual wage for a Dane and an Austrian though


fraud! art!


This is the part I can’t figure out. If that’s the amount, and assuming he negotiated additional costs into his price for the new works, I don’t get this statement:

According to him, he would have had to pay 25,000 kroner ($3,900) himself to realize the two older artworks



It would have been nice for the artist to prep the canvases and meticulously paint them white before doing this. But, perhaps, they did.

Art is all about a story; it’s about expressing a feeling. This artwork definitely resonates with me. It speaks to me of temptation, and of the difference between what an institution considers to be a small amount of money and what that is on a personal scale. I feel it also speaks to the dichotomy of the art world where artists are poor but are expected to mingle with ultra wealthy patrons; many times it feels like the only people not getting rich in the art community are the artists who enable the whole thing.

My guess is the museum will probably be able to sell the work for far more than the amount they paid for it. But I am concerned that the museum will still go after the artist anyway; which would be a sad but fitting continuation of the story…


Haha. I love that song.

@FGD135 More plagiarism!!!

Though I can’t decide if this guy is a genius, an asshole, or just paralyzed and can’t create.

You know, if any creative feels like shit for not doing something they said they would do, just remember Leonardo DaVinci had to be sued on multiple occasions for taking money for art and not delivering it. If one of the greatest artists of all time can’t deliver, you shouldn’t feel bad.


the museum got new and interesting art

Not that new and not that interesting, even if it is kind of funny. Though the artist may find they’ve screwed themself, as no one’s going to give them money to do anything again, I imagine, given that they very publicly didn’t do what they promised, even if they eventually return the money on schedule. But maybe Danish art institutions have more of a sense of humor than I realize…

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The money wasn’t paid as a commission to the artist, it was literally intended to be displayed in the artwork itself and then returned when the exhibition was complete.

Of course, the artist is saying he’s going to breach the contract and keep the money, ie “Take the Money and Run”.

The two older works were smaller canvases (they needed fewer bills).

It’s conceptual art. I think a blank frame is a stronger concept.


Still doesn’t make any sense. The amount of money is the same - it’s representing the annual income…and you can represent amounts using a wide mix of larger and smaller denomination bills, so size of canvas isn’t a good correlary.
Or, if you’re saying the $3,900 was what he would need to pay for two stretched canvases (which, I’m pretty sure that’s way too high, but even if), wouldn’t he have built that into the negotiated price for the art?
It’s no biggie, it just doesn’t really make sense as reported in the article. Needs more detail or context.

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The canvas size would matter if only the topmost bills are real and the rest are some sort of similar looking paper?