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War Bond economics


james leonard war bond
One of James Leonard’s war bonds

With the Iraq war expected to cost in the trillions of dollars, this email (excerpted) from artist James Leonard tickled me with its subversive black humor:

My effort to raise an army of plastic men via The Warbonds Project has caught the eye of curator Ethan Crenson. He has included the Warbond certificate as part of this year’s Multiple and Editions exhibition at Front Room Gallery, in Brooklyn.

…My warbonds come from an edition of 2500 offset prints with multiple high tech security features. Each uniquely numbered certificate will be signed by myself, the purchaser (or an appointed proxy) and sealed with an embosser at the time of purchase.

Here’s the online catalog from Front Room’s show.

This Saturday, Jan. 26, James will give a performance at 8 p.m.–“a briefing on the ins and outs of The Warbonds Project. …This para-paramilitary briefing will fill you in on all you need to know.”

The tale of the printing of the bogus bonds is almost a shaggy dog story, what with James’ efforts to find a certificate print shop with the capabilities of producing a secure issue and his efforts to avoid stepping in legal doodoo.

Multiples and Editions is a group show of work by nearly 40 artists.