curious, not creepy.

treat it like play money. [project 3]
June 7, 2008, 1:53 am
Filed under: Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , ,

I was a sophmore in high school when the Iraq war began, and it took me awhile to figure out where exactly I stood on the issue. My father supported the President, while my mother didn’t take much of a stance either way, friends at school were mostly apathetic but a few took a firm stance against it.  I decided that I wanted to do my own research since I didn’t want to take a side without knowing the facts and after extensive research I found nothing that convinced me that it was a good idea.  And that is when my political activism began, the spring semester of my junior year. I did everything I could to stay informed and attended anti-war and peace rallies whenever I could.  This continued until my first year of college, when the news stopped becoming as important and making time to protest was becoming harder and harder.  But with this assignment, as well all the readings that came along with it, I have had a new motivation to get going again.

I found this website – – which allows you to see how much money the United States, your specific state and even town, has spent on the Iraq war. The numbers are astounding and I felt like they needed to be shared.  When thinking of how to do this I drew inspiration from the Eyes Wide Open piece, I think seeing a massive amount of anything makes people feel overwhelmed and forces them to deal with it as an object which is what I wanted to do, and hope it was accomplished.

For this piece, I took play money and wrote statistics I had found on the National Priorities website and placed them in high traffic areas on campus. This was meant to force the audience to interact with it, to decide wither to leave it or destroy it, to walk on it or over it. I did this all early in the morning as to avoid being seen, and used my lomo fish-eye camera for documentation since it is less conspicuous then a SLR and tripod. I went back later that same day to see what was left  and what was taken down, and was pretty surprised with the outcomes even though I had no expectation of seeing anything when I returned.

art building

Though not as many people saw them as I would have liked, I’m satisfied in knowing that they were at least out in the world and at the very least a handful of people read them while cleaning them up.  Who knows, maybe they ended up engaging in some kind of conversation about wasteful spending.


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