Millionaire’s Chamber: A 1-year project by Thomas Geiger, Part V with treasures by Brigham Baker, Andreas Wagner, Carlos Fernandez, Cosima Grand, Fantacee Wiz, Hawa Kanu, Isata Tejan Sesay, Juliette Uzor, Mabel Turay, Nelly Haliti, Felix Rhodes, Sandino Scheidegger, Sergio Rojas Chaves, Sheka Kallon
Millionaire’s Chamber Part 5:
The first performance festival in the public space of Freetown, Sierra Leone took place in August 2021. It was organized by Random Institute in cooperation with the independent artist network Réunion.
The 14 artists of the festival created a special series of #Iwanttobecomeamillionaire - Sheets called the Freetown Papers. Instead of hiding money (Panama Papers), these papers transfer money to the Global South. Each sheet can be purchased for €33, which directly support the nonprofit organization Social Income, an initiative that offers a radically simple path to fight global poverty by letting everyone participate by contributing 1% of their income. The donations are then paid out directly as a Universal Basic Income to the mobile phones of people in need.
For 11 years, Thomas Geiger has been selling stamped, signed and numbered certificates out of an edition of 1.000.000 – for 1 Euro each. The story of this performance begins in spring 2010, when he placed himself in a public space carrying a sign that read: I want to become a millionaire. The work became the economic backbone of his artistic practice; a regular source of capital for his projects (and sometimes just funding for his living expenses).
In recent years, Geiger’s purist certificates have themselves become a place for encounters between other artists’ work and his own. The so-called Artists’ Sheets are a growing collection of “aesthetically enhanced” Millionaire-Sheets made by fellow artists. This follows a tradition that has its roots in the beginning of the 20th century. Under the influence of Jugendstil and the Arts & Crafts movement, industrials engaged artists to illustrate their companies’ shares in order to enhance their value through this artistic addition.
Successively the latest of these Artists’ Sheets will be on display during one year in the Millionaire's Chamber, which is located, (well secured), in the basement of the gallery. The fourth three contributions are by Isabel Nolan, Salvatore Viviano and Oriol Vilanova.
Part I with treasures by Talisa Lallai, Maya Rochat, SUZANNE, 15.05.–14.06.2021
Part II with treasures by Na Kim, Neven Allgeier and Anna Paul, 15.06.–14.07.2021
Part III with treasures by Franziska Nast, Sarah Ancelle Schönfeld and Hendrik-Jan Hunneman, 16.07.–15.09.2021
Part IV with treasures by Isabel Nolan, Salvatore Viviano and Oriol Vilanova, 15.09.–15.10.2021
Part V with treasures by Andreas Wagner, Brigham Baker, Carlos Fernandez, Cosima Grand, Fantacee Wiz, Felix Rhodes, Hawa Kanu, Isata Tejan Sesay, Juliette Uzor, Mabel Turay, Nelly Haliti, Sandino Scheidegger, Sergio Rojas Chaves, Sheka Kallon