DIOGO DA CRUZ
“WORDCOIN” proposes the implementation of a new currency that will give a literal value to speech. By creating a fictional Bank for Argumentation, the customer-museumgoer will have the opportunity to trust his or her arguments to an institution that can save and trade them, giving their ideas deserved and objective exposure.
While physical human bodies encounter so many obstacles to movement, coins are objects that can travel freely across borders and are mostly welcomed wherever they go. Wouldn’t it be great if a coin could host our ideas and spread them efficiently around the world?
This ironic surrender to our society’s notion of value has the goal of showing how valuable our free speech is, and how poor a human becomes without it. It intends to question the effectiveness of the online medium as instrument for the exchange of arguments, and comment on the ascendancy of political leaders with populist rhetorics whose wealth magnifies the impact of their words.
Now, more than ever, argumentation is an important weapon in the absurd post-truth era. If facts and reality are not clear anymore, we should only relay in words, as they become extremely valuable. What we think and what we defend should be clarified and disseminated until it lands in the right hands. In the same way art projects need support from institutions to actually come true, your ideas can be trusted to The Bank for Argumentation, which will invest in your speech with interest.
This idea was presented in Kunstarkaden, the exhibition space of Kulturreferat München (Department of Arts and Culture of the City of Munich). There were three distinct zones for The Bank for Argumentation: a promotional area with promotional videos; a lounge area with inflatable couches and free water; and the office area, with furniture from the Kulturreferat used as plinths to exhibit the banknotes, coins, credit cards, and contracts of “WORDCOIN.” The performance started with Nina Simone’s “I Wish I Knew How It Would Feel to Be Free,” which I sang along to by myself. Then I gave a presentation about the concept of this new bank and its odd currency, trying to raise awareness of the relevance and pertinence of such a proposal.