Artist makes off with $84K in cash meant for use in artwork, delivers blank canvases to museum


  • A museum gave an artist $84,000 to use in a work of art.
  • So, the artist delivered two empty canvases titled “Take the Money and Run.”
  • The artist has until Jan. 16, 2022 to return the cash.

A museum gave a Danish artist $84,000 to use in a work of art. The artist delivered two empty canvases entitled “Take the Money and Run.”

The Kunsten Museum of Modern Art commissioned Jens Haaning to recreate two of his earlier pieces for their exhibition on labor conditions and money. His earlier works represented the average annual wage in Denmark and Austria with banknotes attached to the canvas. The museum also paid him $3,900 for the work, along with the pile of money.

Museum director Lasse Andersson said a contract binds Haaning to return the money when the exhibition closes.

When he finally saw “Take the Money and Run,” Andersson said he laughed.

“Jens is known for his conceptual and activistic art with a humoristic touch. And he gave us that – but also a bit of a wake up call as everyone know wonders were did the money go,” he said.

The artist released a statement explaining his choice.

“The artwork is essentially about the working conditions of artists. It is a statement saying that we also have the responsibility of questioning the structures that we are part of. And if these structures are completely unreasonable, we must break with them. It can be your marriage, your work – it can be any type of societal structure,” Haaning said.

Source: CBS News

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