Art & Commerce | Andrew Jeffrey Wright Is Only In It For The Money At The Hole NYC
Everybody knows the art world is a glorified ATM machine & artist Andrew Jeffrey Wright has spent the past 15 years as a struggling artist trying to make withdrawals, a process he dutifully documented in a series of photos titled Andrew Jeffrey Wright’s Money, on view now at The Hole Gallery, NYC.
Spoofing the genre of braggadocious money photos where 100s are spread in huge piles, spell out names, fan out around guns or drugs or ladies, these photos mostly have 1s and 5s and even coins, no guns and drugs, sometimes a lady, and, like, cats and trees and stuffed animals. An underground artist who is well known by artists but has yet to achieve commercial success in the same way as many of his peers, AJW has been taking these photos for 15 years capturing in this unique way a bit of what being a struggling artist looks like.
Maybe he DJs a party and there is a photo with about $340, maybe he has $93 and a pizza, maybe he is skint and has $13.25 on an ottoman. Who knows what he did to get over $800 in his underwear. The works are dated and it looks like 2010 was a pretty good year, 2014 too. Why does it feel so subversive to have your bank balance on view? Or rather to be a cash-only person without a bank balance at all? This struggle is a sharp contrast to the conspicuous luxury of the contemporary art market, and simultaneously it is uplifting to see humor, ingenuity, perseverance in a realm usually filled with greed, insecurity and competitiveness.
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