Norway's Nordlys Newspaper
September 7, 2002
pgs 1, 16-17
Author: Lasse Jangås
More Project Info
English Translation of the article is below.
"I am not afraid" it says, printed on the banknote. It¹s not fake; it¹s art, imported from New York. *Culture pages 16-17.
Look out you might have a work of art in your wallet
Norwegian banknotes marked "I am not terrorized" and "I am not afraid" is now circulating in Tromsø. They¹re not fake. It¹s art, imported from New York City.
The American performance artist David Greg Harth has a studio just a couple of blocks away from Ground Zero in New York. 11. September last year he was a witness when the World Trade Center collapsed. In anger and despair he decided he had to do something. Now his art has spread itself to Tromsø.
Harth was recently interviewed by the TV-station MTV, where he told that he on 9/11 wandered from hospital to hospital offering to give blood and he also volunteered to the work that had to be done in the city. - I remember I was walking around on Manhattan and told myself: "I am not afraid" and "I am not terrorized". It didn¹t take me long before I realized that the best way I could do something meaningful was through an artistic expression. Because the terrorist attacks in New York was aimed at the financial centre of the world, the artist chose to strike back by using the American currency to express himself. Today there is more than 200.000 dollar bills with Harth's imprint circulating around USA. And now you can risk getting Norwegian banknotes with the American artists expression on them on the street in Tromsø. - I met David Greg Harth in New York in May, and I immediately felt interested in the project, "Erik" a Tromsø-guy says. He doesn¹t want his name or picture on print, both cause he fears reprisals from the police and because he doesn¹t want to take any of the honour away from the American artist. - This is his project, I¹m just spreading the message, the Tromsø-guy says. When he suggested that Harth should spread the message in Europe as well, the artist offered to send printing tools to Tromsø. About a week ago it arrived in Tromsø, and these days the Tromsø-guy is labelling all the banknotes he¹s got. - Compared to all the bills in circulation throughout Tromsø, these amount to a quite modest lot. But I hope people will think twice about the message, he says.
- The terrorist attacks made a big impression on me too, I have family in New York as well, he says.
Article down left:
But is it art?
- The artist uses a different communication-channel for a clear political message, historically he can be linked to a generation, or a tradition, within American art that has it's origin in the 60's and 70's, says steward Jarle Strømodden (picture) at Tromsø Kunstforeing (Art association).
Article down right:
The bills will be destroyed
The high circulation-rate on bills in Norway will make it difficult for "Erik" to spread the message. Every time a bank makes a cash-deposit into Norges Bank (Norwegian National Bank) or gets their night-safe emptied by Norsk Kontantservice AS (Norwegian Cash service AS), all the bills and coins goes through a control.