Dread Scott Money to Burn (2010)
  • Title: Money to Burn
  • Holdings: photo gallery, program, video (HIDVL)
  • Duration: 00:03:27
  • Language: English
  • Date: 22 Jun 2010
  • Location: Wall Street, New York, New York, USA
  • Type-Format: performance art
  • Cast: Conceived and performed by Dread Scott.
  • Credits: Photographic documentation by Dexter Jones.

Dread Scott Money to Burn (2010)

Dread Scott confronts the politics of capitalism in Money to Burn (2010). Performed on Wall Street in New York City, Scott repeatedly sings the phrase “Money to burn” while lighting currency on fire. The currency that Scott burns includes his personal money, grant money awarded by Franklin Furnace, and donated money from pedestrians. His gesture of burning currency—an action that is considered a crime in the United States under Title 18, Section 333—illuminates the epidemic of income inequality and signals for an economic system not based on profit. It is important to note that the currency that Scott burns is not exchanged for any goods or services. Rather, the pyre of dollar bill ashes that form throughout the performance becomes a site for the public to imagine an economy outside of capital gain.

Dread Scott makes revolutionary art to propel history forward. Scott works in a range of media including performance, installation, photography, screen-printing, and video. His artwork illuminates the oppressive structures forged by society and challenges the audience to envision a world where justice prevails. Scott has exhibited at Cristin Tierney Gallery, MoMA PS1, Whitney Museum of American Art, Winkleman Gallery, Walker Art Center, Contemporary Arts Museum Houston, and Pori Art Museum. He has presented Dread Scott: Welcome to America (2008) at the Museum of Contemporary African Diasporan Arts, and Dread Scott: Decision (2012) at the Brooklyn Academy of Music as part of the Next Wave Festival. Scott’s artwork is included in collections at the New Museum, Whitney Museum of American Art, and Akron Art Museum. His public sculptures are installed at Logan Square in Philadelphia and Franconia Sculpture Park in Minnesota. He has received grants from Creative Capital Foundation, Franklin Furnace, and Pollock-Krasner Foundation. Scott has also been awarded fellowships for his work from the New York Foundation for the Arts. He has been an Artist-in-Residence at OMI International Arts Center and Lower Manhattan Cultural Council.

 Additional Materials

icon Money to Burn performance handout


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