Aesthetic Currency

Rhode Island artist Obadiah Eelcut has designed and printed a
hand-made currency that can be exchanged worldwide for art, back
rubs, music, and just about anything else. Obadiah Eelcut’s ‘Noney’
has a denomination of zero to represent a relative value, and
includes the inscription: ‘The bearer is entitled to receive this
note’s aesthetic value.’ In other words, the currency’s value is
entirely negotiable. On the Noney web site, one storyteller says he
uses the currency for moments of ‘synchronicity,’ while another
claims to have better luck in Italy passing along his Noney than
exchanging traveler’s checks. Another brought the currency into the
bedroom and now ‘won’t put out unless there is Noney involved.’
Most Noney-users seem to be drawn toward the beautiful artwork and
the satisfaction of using something other than American greenbacks
in their daily transactions. As one person noted about a recent
exchange, ‘If I could make the smile on her face, when she saw the
Noney, into my own personal currency then I would be a rich man.
All I can do for now is to take that magic moment to the
Joel Stonington

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