Art & Money, Money & God
Venice Biennale 2013 has rumoured down to me from 2 unconnected but savvy sources and in both cases 1 installation was mentioned with open excitement: MONEY. The other exhibitions that sparked my curiosity on the same subject related other to money or to process, or both. The reason is purely personal, as I don’t come from ‘arts’ but ‘process’ that saves/generates money in order to make people lives better.
A silk-suited oligarch rides high above the crowds in the Russian pavilion, booted and saddled on a lofty beam, idly tossing peanut shells on the worthless groundlings below. In the next room, cascades of bright coins rain down from the cupola. A sinister middleman draws the money back up from the basement by the bucket-load, returning it by conveyor belt to the roof – where the cycle begins all over again. This is Danaë’s golden shower in perpetual motion: an allegory of power and monstrous greed.
How is anyone to stop it? You could break the system by refusing to put the coins in the middleman’s bucket, but that would bring an end to the spectacle in which all the art-worlders at the biennale have become willing stooges, picking the money from the floor.
- 1550: Religion - Science - Philosophy
- 1950: Culture - Technology - Arts
- 2050: (Social)Entrepreneurship - BioChemistry - Sustainability
In spring 2013 we were lucky to attend a brilliant exhibition in Kunstahalle Wien entitled “Wolken. Welt des Flüchtigen” -
"Wolken sind faszinierend. Sie ändern die Form, die Farbe, wirken romantisch oder ein anderes Mal bedrohlich und beeinflussen die Befindlichkeit der Menschen. Die Ausstellung zeigt Maler vom frühen 19. Jahrhundert bis heute, die dieses allgegenwärtige Naturphänomen festgehalten haben. Vertretene Künstler sind William Turner, Claude Monet, Ferdinand Hodler, Max Beckmann und Gerhard Richter."
The entire exposition compiled from most memorable: Andy Warhol’s blow-dry/floating clouds installation, photography walls, W. Turner, Vynil covered by musicians throughout the history of vynil and beyond. It smelled of familiar ‘sense of perfect design’, just like the feeling I used to get on my trips to Japan for the process improvement meetings.
editor’s note: Banksy was missing with his masterpiece on the Jerusalem wall :)
Later that year, our small organisation based in Nieuw-West Amsterdam were introduced to the Bit-coin and its Dutch sister Qoin. From innovative Knowmads, the alternative business school, to Stichting DOEN, from German Government to Amazon.com - everybody seem to be growing to embrace what only 5 years ago was just ‘another geek’s wet dream’ technology. And using it.
We got donated 80$ in bit coins within 1 minute of setting up an account, during the workshop at Greenhouse, Knowmads school. Beat that, local government!
Qoin gaat een blauwdruk (software, handboek, etc.) ontwikkelen waarmee groepen buurtbewoners of bedrijven zelf vorm kunnen geven aan een eigen aanvullend geldsysteem. Aanvullende geldsystemen kunnen op lokaal of regionaal niveau voor sociale en ecologische doelen worden ingezet. De introductie van eigen geld geeft mensen de gelegenheid om eigen regels te bepalen. Zij kunnen waarde toekennen aan wat zij belangrijk vinden. Qoin helpt groepen bedrijven of bewoners om zelf initiatieven te ontwikkelen. De economie wordt versterkt, doordat er meer diversiteit en samenhang ontstaat.”
What is brilliant is that both Clouds and Money installations are ones of not an «object» but a «process». "process-art, it already exists in some places.” Process that dominates our lives and needs to be understood in order to make influence on the planet and our lives, personal ones, in local communities. What is brilliant about Money and Religion in our contemporary real life is that they seem to have become abstract intangible objects.
Building with money. Abstract? When one thinks of Florence, one cannot avoid thinking of Medici family who have practically designed their perfect little aesthetically driven utopia.
Those hundred years of change, and of tension between a life growing ere more secular, and the declining spiritual credibility of the Papacy - from the end of the Schism in 1417, to Luther’s open rebellion against the Papacy in 1517, which brought the beginning of the Protestant Reformation - are the years in which the Renaissance flowered in Florence. The old idols were dead. No new ones yet lived.
God and Money: Florence and the Medici in the Renaissance Including Cosimo I’s Uffizi and Its Collections by