Geoff Hargadon: The States Project: Massachusetts
I am ending this week of Massachusetts on street artist and neighbor, Geoff Hargadon, also known as Cash For Your Warhol (CFYW). Though, I had seen Geoff’s handy work around town and on the internet well before I was introduced to him. Hargadon can boast that he is one of the first artists to go viral with his reactionary piece “The Somerville Gates,” a hilarious and cat-friendly-to-scale parody of the much larger New York installation by Christo and Jeanne-Claude in 2005. His $3.50 art project boasted crashing his website, wracking up a bandwidth bill in the thousands of dollars (this was when you were charged by traffic, kids) and getting his very own review in the New York Times.
Since then, Hargadon’s conceptual work has popped up in galleries and street corners alike, mostly engaging in rich commentary on the uncomfortable (and often darkly comedic) relationship of money to the art world.
His Cash For Your Warhol signs originated as a response to Brandeis University’s 2009 decision to sell the collection of its Rose Art Museum to offset the loss of it’s endowment; scandalizing the art world and the University. Hargadon created the first sign then, posting it on the lawn of the embattled Museum. The project has since grown into an interactive piece (see the stickers, and the instagram #cfyw) that Hargadon has received positive, negative and desperate responses to via its listed phone line. The documentary photographs of the sign installations have become an odyssey of sorts for Geoff, with the images blending into crude landscapes that create a cacophony of rough streets and rural bleakness alike. They are a sardonic reminder that our economic forces are ever present in our visual culture.
Geoff Hargadon is a conceptual artist and photographer from Somerville, MA. His current project, Cash For Your Warhol, was featured by Société Perrier at Pulse Miami in 2011, was the subject of a solo exhibition at Montserrat College of Art in 2010, and has been collected by a number of collectors and institutions, including the Andy Warhol Museum in Pittsburgh, MIT List Visual Arts Center in Cambridge, and the Hood Museum of Art, Hanover, NH. His photography has appeared in a number books and publications. Hargadon is also the creator of The Somerville Gates (2005).
Cash For Your Warhol
CFYW is Geoff Hargadon’s take on art-as-commodity, a reference to the financial crisis and the ubiquitous signage that responded to it. The signs are screen-printed on corrugated plastic, the exact materials used by others trying to buy houses, cars, and gold – deliberately designed to create an ambiguous message when installed on the street. CFYW has also been presented globally in other media, including several billboards in Miami and Boston.
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Geoff Hargadon: The States Project: MassachusettsApril 29th, 2017
Candice Jackson: The States Project: MassachusettsApril 28th, 2017
Louie Despres: The States Project: MassachusettsApril 27th, 2017
Emma Dixon: The States Project: MassachusettsApril 26th, 2017
Steve Locke: The States Project: MassachusettsApril 25th, 2017