Data + Design Project

Currency Art: Taken From the Pockets of the Military

Monday 04.09.2012 , Posted by
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Sometimes life creates art inspiration in strange ways. For artist Chad Person, the inspiration for his humorously titled series TaxCut came in the form of a failing soldier in his digital photography class. Person relates on his website how, when he found out the soldier would have to repay his $400 course tuition grant to the military for his failure, the artist saw an opportunity to make sure the military couldn’t assign the funds elsewhere, like buying more weapons. How? As Person puts it:

“In a time of war, we all need to make tough choices. I chose that day to change a grade, passing a failed student with an A+ to ensure that his tuition fees – which had fortunately found their way into education via a defense allocation, would remain there. He didn’t deserve to pass based on his performance, but I saw it as a rare opportunity to take a little back from our government’s excessive defense spending, even if it might have been just enough to halt the purchase of one box of ammunition.”

Now, in a similar spirit, Person is destroying currency to create artwork that looks like the latest military weapons, from tanks to fighter jets and aircraft carriers. Further sticking it to the government, he writes off his material costs from his taxes. In doing so he effectively removes currency from circulation while at the same time deducting money from the IRS coffers. Now that is art as a weapon. See more at chadperson.com.

Click here or the image below for a detailed view of Person’s collage method:

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Benjamin Starr

Written by Benjamin Starr



Known in some circles as the most amazing man in the universe, he once saved an entire family of muskrats from a sinking, fire engulfed steamboat while recovering from two broken arms relating to a botched no-chute wingsuit landing in North Korea. When not impressing people with his humbling humility, he can be found freelance writing, finding shiny objects on the internet, enjoying the company of much-appreciated friends and living out his nomadic nature. He is Managing Editor of Visual News. Follow his movements on Twitter:

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