Locust is a pejorative term derived from the German “Heuschrecke”, which German politician Franz Müntefering (from the social democratic SPD party) created in the context of describing private investors, private equity funds and investment banks. The term has been popularized and is continually used in discussions critical to capitalism in Germany. – Wikipedia, 11.03.2012
Money, our prime signifier of both ambition and perdition. Money has gone from being an elementary medium of exchange to being a means of exploitation: a colossal cloud of hot money [and incomprehensible financial instruments] buzzes above the global economy like a biblical swarm of locust. Thus money as bane. Yet money per se, plain as the one-dollar-bill, always retains its basic ability to function as a pragmatic unit of accounting for goods & services. Hence money as blessing.
Mabona’s installation materializes this threatening yet utterly hypnotic ambivalence of money: the quotidian dollar-bill which accomplishes our daily business begins folding in on itself, gains awesome complexity and takes flight as a foreboding swarm of monetary locusts. It is the concept of transformation that intrigues Mabona: “Although a swarm of locust is frightening, hope carries the day in this piece (name). In Origami, paper is folded into definite forms but these shapes can be unfolded again. The creases will remain but the paper can be folded into something else again. [I enjoy playing with the concept of transience. (Vergaenglichkeit)]”
[Each single specimen was folded from an uncut square of (US) currency sheet and took Mabona 4 to 5 hours to complete. As part of the exhibition FOLDING PAPER: The Infinite Possibilities of Origami the swarm will be on display in the Japanese American National Museum in LA until August 26, 2012.]
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