Tag Archives: money

Remarkable Hobo Nickels Carved from Clad Coins by Paolo Curcio

Remarkable Hobo Nickels Carved from Clad Coins by Paolo Curcio sculpture money faces currency bas relief anatomy

About two years we featured a great selection of skull nickels, a numismatic curiosity where miniature bas relief sculptures are carved into coins, an artform that’s broadly referred to as hobo nickel art. While researching a follow-up article on Hobonickelart.com I stumbled onto the work of Paolo Curcio (aka “mrthe”) who appears to have taken the process of carving coins to an entirely new level. Using a variety of different coins the Barcelona-based artist creates etched homages to pop culture, illustrations of figures from literature, and most commonly: macabre portraits of skulls and death, probably the most prevalent theme in hobo nickel art.

Remarkable Hobo Nickels Carved from Clad Coins by Paolo Curcio sculpture money faces currency bas relief anatomy

Remarkable Hobo Nickels Carved from Clad Coins by Paolo Curcio sculpture money faces currency bas relief anatomy

Remarkable Hobo Nickels Carved from Clad Coins by Paolo Curcio sculpture money faces currency bas relief anatomy

Remarkable Hobo Nickels Carved from Clad Coins by Paolo Curcio sculpture money faces currency bas relief anatomy

Remarkable Hobo Nickels Carved from Clad Coins by Paolo Curcio sculpture money faces currency bas relief anatomy

Remarkable Hobo Nickels Carved from Clad Coins by Paolo Curcio sculpture money faces currency bas relief anatomy

Remarkable Hobo Nickels Carved from Clad Coins by Paolo Curcio sculpture money faces currency bas relief anatomy

Remarkable Hobo Nickels Carved from Clad Coins by Paolo Curcio sculpture money faces currency bas relief anatomy

Remarkable Hobo Nickels Carved from Clad Coins by Paolo Curcio sculpture money faces currency bas relief anatomy

One aspect of Curcio’s process that’s really amazing is his ability to use coins made from multiple layers of metal (referred to as clad coins) which he then strategically reveals to create colored flourishes and background patterns. You can see much more of his work over on his website, and keep an eye on his Ebay page for occasional coin listings.

The American Dream: A Sand Castle Suburb Consumed by the Ocean

The American Dream: A Sand Castle Suburb Consumed by the Ocean waves sand real estate multiples money installation

The American Dream: A Sand Castle Suburb Consumed by the Ocean waves sand real estate multiples money installation

The American Dream: A Sand Castle Suburb Consumed by the Ocean waves sand real estate multiples money installation

The American Dream: A Sand Castle Suburb Consumed by the Ocean waves sand real estate multiples money installation

The American Dream: A Sand Castle Suburb Consumed by the Ocean waves sand real estate multiples money installation

Masterplan is a installation by designer and artist Chad Wright inspired by his own experiences growing up in a sprawling suburb of Southern California. The piece is meant to juxtapose the playful childhood experience of building sand castles on the beach with his brother, versus the grim, modern-day reality of our current real estate collapse. Learn more over on his website. Photographed by Lynn Kloythanomsup of Architectural Black. (via this isn’t happiness)

Geometric Currency Sculptures by Kristi Malakoff

Geometric Currency Sculptures by Kristi Malakoff paper origami money geometric currency

Geometric Currency Sculptures by Kristi Malakoff paper origami money geometric currency

Geometric Currency Sculptures by Kristi Malakoff paper origami money geometric currency

Geometric Currency Sculptures by Kristi Malakoff paper origami money geometric currency

Geometric Currency Sculptures by Kristi Malakoff paper origami money geometric currency

Geometric Currency Sculptures by Kristi Malakoff paper origami money geometric currency

I’m really enjoying these folded and pasted currency sculptures by Canadian visual artist Kristi Malakoff (previously). Each polyhedra is folded, cut and pasted together from several bills, blending the textures and colors from multiple worldwide currencies. (via my modern met)

Currency Portraits by Senseteam

Currency Portraits by Senseteam portraits paper money currency

Currency Portraits by Senseteam portraits paper money currency

Currency Portraits by Senseteam portraits paper money currency

Currency Portraits by Senseteam portraits paper money currency

Using thin strips of dissected currency from around the world, Chinese creative firm Senseteam (website currently down) has composed a series of portraits for a book and poster series entitled Big Business 3 meant to “reflect the subtle relationships and influences across money, desire, society, nations, and human beings.” The project won a gold award at the Design for Asia Award 2011 and you can see much more over on designboom.

Dollar Broom

Dollar Broom sculpture money home currency

A new piece by currency artist Mark Wagner that redefines dirty meaning of dirty money. (via julien foulatier)

Money Faces

Money Faces social portraits money currency

Money Faces social portraits money currency

Money Faces social portraits money currency

Money Faces social portraits money currency

Money Faces social portraits money currency

Too. Much. Fun. While not particularly a new idea, Reddit user MadSon11 recently photographed a great mashup self-portrait using the lower half of Alexander Hamilton’s head from a U.S. $10 bill (top photo). An instant meme was born, and soon dozens of money faces were pouring in from all over the world. The hilarity continues on Visual News.

Money Trees

Money Trees trees sculpture plants nature money currency

Money Trees trees sculpture plants nature money currency

Money Trees trees sculpture plants nature money currency

Money Trees trees sculpture plants nature money currency

Money Trees trees sculpture plants nature money currency

Money Trees trees sculpture plants nature money currency

Money Trees trees sculpture plants nature money currency

Money Trees trees sculpture plants nature money currency

As perhaps a companion piece to last week’s skull nickels, here’s yet another thing I had no idea existed. Apparently in several wooded areas around the UK, passersby have been stopping for decades (if not centuries), meticulously hammering small denomination coins intro trees. Most of the trees seem to be in and around Cumbria and Portmeirion, and I didn’t find a single example of a tree like this located outside the UK. According to this recent article by the BBC, the practice might date back to the early 1700s in Scotland where ill people stuck florins into trees with the idea that the tree would take away their sickness. The practice seems akin to love padlocks or Americans collaborative effort of sticking their nasty ass gum all over everything. (photos courtesy shaun whiteman, drew, ken werwerka, rachel bibby, paul morriss, ministry, donald mcdougal, heartbeeps, via lustik and hrtbps)

Skull Nickels

Skull Nickels money faces currency anatomy

Skull Nickels money faces currency anatomy

Skull Nickels money faces currency anatomy

Skull Nickels money faces currency anatomy

Skull Nickels money faces currency anatomy

Skull Nickels money faces currency anatomy

Skull Nickels money faces currency anatomy

My friend Ben (previously) shot me a link to this article about carved coins called Hobo Nickels. Although the history of carving miniature bas relief sculptures into coins stretches back to the 18th century if not earlier, it was greatly popularized in the early 20th century with the introduction of the Buffalo nickel. This particular coin was minted using soft metal and was imprinted with the portrait of an indian with bold features, making it easier to deface and transform into the portraits of other people, animals, or even scenery. Add to that the idle hands of unemployed artists during the depression (thus, “hobo”) and soon a flood of curious numismatic treasures were born. Most of the images on hobo nickels are too folk artsy for my taste, however a number of artists etched away the flesh of the subject to reveal these awesomely macabre skulls. Hobo nickel carving remains a popular hobby today and it even has a society. Don’t you wish we had actual money that looked like this? Images linked to their sources, most of which are live Ebay auctions. (thnx, ben!)

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