back to article Danish artist pockets museum's cash and calls it art... and other stories

Welcome to another lash-up of lunacy, as we gather together some odd and unusual stories from the past few days and pass them to you surreptitiously while suggesting "the swallows fly south at sunset" in a bad Hungarian accent. Danish artist redefines work News from Denmark first of all, where conceptual artist Jens Haaning …

  1. b0llchit Silver badge

    The Kunsten says that Haaning has until 16 January, the closing date of the Work It Out exhibition, to return the cash.

    But, they accepted the "new" art and are showing it too. Then, they have accepted the works as an alternative for which they must pay. I guess the new bill will be exactly the same as the old bill. So, the money transfers from A to B, from B to A and finally again from A to B.

    The artist may actually want to up the bill a bit for the added publicity.

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Given the state of the world today, I suspect the museum could sell an NFT of the blank canvases and come out money ahead

    1. HandleAlreadyTaken

      Great (blank) future

      He can probably build a very successful career selling empty canvases, with a certificate proving that *he*, a recognized artist, is the one that did not paint them, and not some dabbling dilettante

      1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

        Re: Great (blank) future


        not some non-dabbling dilettante

      2. Kane Silver badge

        Re: Great (blank) future

        "He can probably build a very successful career selling empty canvases, with a certificate proving that *he*, a recognized artist, is the one that did not paint them, and not some dabbling dilettante"

        'Hey, this must be a clue, sarge!' said Nobby, who had returned to his default activity of mooching about and poking at things to see if they were valuable. 'Look, someone dumped a load of stinking old rubbish here!'

        He'd wandered across to a plinth which did, indeed, appear to be piled high with rags.

        'Don't touch that, please!' said Sir Reynold, rushing over. 'That's Don't Talk To Me About Mondays! It's Daniellarina Pouter's most controversial hwork! You didn't move anything, did you?' he added nervously. 'It's literalleah priceless and she's got a sharp tongue on her!'

        'It's only a lot of old rubbish,' Nobby protested, backing away.

        'Art is greater than the sum of its mere mechanical components, corporal,' said the curator. 'Surely you hwould not say that Caravati's Three Large Pink hWomen and One Piece of Gauze is just, ahem, "a lot of old pigment"?'

        'What about this one, then?' said Nobby, pointing to the adjacent plinth. 'It's just a big stake with a nail in it! Is this art, too?'

        'Freedom? If it hwas ever on the market, it hwould probableah fetch thirty thousand dollars,' said Sir Reynold.

        'For a bit of wood with a nail in it?' said Fred Colon. 'Who did it'

        'After he viewed Don't Talk To Me About Mondays! Lord Vetinari graciousleah had Ms Pouter nailed to the stake by her ear,' said Sir Reynold. 'However, she did manage to pull free during the afternoon.'

        'I bet she was mad!' said Nobby.

        'Not after she hwon several awards for it. I believe she's planning to nail herself to several other things. It could be a very exciting exhibition.'

        'Tell you what, then, sir,' said Nobby helpfully. 'Why don't you leave the ol' big frame where it is and give it a new name, like Art Theft?'

        'No,' said Sir Reynold coldly. 'That would be foolish.'

        - Thud!, Sir Pterry

        Hat icon, El Reg?

  3. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

    Radio4: Absolute Power

    The money will be quietly given back at the end of the tax year, after the artist, the museum and a bunch of publicists have all got millions worth of PR out of this ?

    1. AW-S

      Re: Radio4: Absolute Power

      ""It wasn't what we had agreed on in the contract, but we got new and interesting art," Kunsten CEO Lasse Andersson told NPR"

      Since the CEO of the gallery made the above comment and hasn't mentioned theft or fraud, I suspect you are correct.

  4. chivo243 Silver badge

    Art for the sake or art

    or art for the sake of profit? suckers born every minute... wanna buy some diamonds?

    1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

      Re: Art for the sake or art

      Or, as 10cc would say;

      Art for Arts sake

      Money for Gods sake

      Gimme the readys

      Gimme the cash

  5. A. Coatsworth Silver badge

    Conceptual artist noun

    1. W*nker who thinks he/she can get away with any sort of braindead publicity stunt they can think of. They are usually correct.

    1. Mongrel

      It's a vicious circle, when you have people who are willing to pay 120K for a banana duct-taped to a wall it seems 'art' is about what you can blag rather than what you can produce.

  6. Natalie Gritpants Jr


    Just because they think the ratio of earning in those two countries matter they want to make a big fuss about it. If anyone cared a couple of minutes on the internet will give you the numbers. Typical patronising from the art world thinking that the public has to see pictures and can't cope with a simple percentage. Futile too as it will make no difference except maybe reinforce some middle class prejudices.

  7. Chris G

    Humpty Dump ty

    Is the theft going to involve a lot of messy paperwork for investigators?

  8. Anonymous Coward

    Empty and Humpty

    So instead, [Jens Haaning] chose to create a new artwork called Take The Money And Run, which consisted of him sending two entirely blank canvasses in frames to the museum and then pocketing their cash.

    Add a bunch of zeroes and isn't that what McKinsey does?

    A hugely expensive bronze statue of nursery rhyme character Humpty Dumpty sitting on a toilet.

    They've misidentified it. That's The Donald without his toupee.

  9. TeeCee Gold badge

    It's a gift horse...

    ...take your head out of its gob.

    What you have there is some actual, honest-to-god, by-a-known-artist "art" that's waaay more wall / display / saleroom friendly than pretty much everything ever produced by the likes of Damien Hirst and Tracey Emin.

    And it only cost you $85k. You should be really bloody grateful.

  10. Robert Grant Silver badge

    > The new work reminds us that we work for money.

    If you need reminding...

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