IPO: Initial Ploonger Offering
Artist team Rob Duarte and Judy Rushin
propose an exhibition that is a self- contained
economic system of objects, automation, and
exchange. The centerpiece of the exhibition will
be an alternate form of currency called the
‘ploondger.’ Reflecting the burden of wealth and
accumulation, this currency is oversized, cast in
cement, and value coded in colors of thickbodied
Duarte and Rushin will use the gallery as mint
and marketplace. Viewers at the opening will see
the development of the ploondger-based
economy as they watch Duarte and Rushin
prime the system by assigning and changing
value to their currency with a series of colors. In
another area of the gallery a kiosk will offer
ploondgers for dollars based on current
exchange rates or as trade for personal items
that will be displayed and re-traded for
After the opening weekend, the exhibition will feature the new currency as well as
the machines and tools used to color code it. As the exhibition unfolds over time,
the new economic marker will commingle with actual dollars injected into the
system by visitors to the “marketplace.”
The experimental nature of the project poses an open-ended question: does this
micro-facsimile of macro-economic function flow smoothly, or will the new currency
collapse under its own weight.