The Danish artist received an art grant of $ 84,000 and then gifted the museum with two blank canvases entitled “Take The Money and Run”

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A common experience of visiting an art museum or gallery specializing in modern art is not understanding why an extremely simple work comes at a huge price. The Danish artist Jens Haaning has even surpassed the modern art world with his latest project.

The Kunsten Museum of Modern Art in Aalborg, Denmark commissioned Haaning for part of their exhibition “Work It Out”, which focuses on the theme of modern working conditions. The museum intended for him to recreate an earlier piece made from real Danish and Austrian banknotes that represented the annual wages in the two countries.

To help Haaning create his piece, the museum gave him the equivalent of $ 84,000. Instead of delivering the agreed piece, Haaning delivered two blank canvases. The title he gave these two blank canvases?

“Take the money and run”

Here is one of the works actually delivered:

HENNING BAGGER / Ritzau Scanpix / AFP via Getty Images

Haaning recently stated in a Danish radio interview:

“The work of art is that I took the money … I encourage others who have just as miserable working conditions as I do to do the same.

The museum doesn’t necessarily see things the same way the artist does, but a representative says they’ll wait for Haaning to return the money until the exhibition ends in January. But Haaning says the only crime he has committed is a breach of contract:

“It’s not theft, it’s a breach of contract, and the breach is part of the job.”

For the time being, Haaning does not reveal to anyone what he has done with the money or where it could be.

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