Every few years we lament the passing of our favourite plastic friends, which like many good friends can be the bane of our life or a blessing, so it’s good to know that there is an afterlife for credit cards. Whether they’re shredded, cut, sewn or painted, post-expiry-date cards, in the hands of artists, live to be appreciated from another perspective. Here we present the most creative pieces of credit card art for your pleasure.
We’re not sure if the artists who shred their cards have had a really bad experience and feel the need to vent their financial frustrations, or whether they’re making a bold statement about the financial climate in general. Maybe they just like cutting things. Whatever the reason, the effect is impressive. These carefully placed works of Peggy Dembicer are reminiscent of hypnotic magic eye puzzles. Go on, squint your eyes.
The mixed media creations below are a parody of a credit card industry out of control. The artist saved all the offers for a credit card he received through the mail for six weeks, which in the end totalled 38 different credit card offers. He then shredded them into long thin strips and sewed them together. Even the envelopes were recycled into the piece.
The piece above, entitled Project Blue (also from the Preapproved Porject) is made entirely of the terms and conditions inserts from Wamu credit card offers.
Banksy rocks. His sense of irony is brilliant, and, no, he hasn’t been spray painting a new line of works. The nifty graffiti skills you see before you were photographed in a San Francisco street by Brett Lider. If only it were that easy to conjure up a credit card. Just think, no APR.
Credit cards and cheap, easily-accessed lines of credit are often blamed for the surge in consumer spending we’ve seen in many world economies. Of course, that also means that some people spend too much and get themselves into debt.
Kate Bingaman-Burt is an artist on a mission to show the world her consumer habits by line drawing everything she buys, which, if you have a look through her Flickr profile, is a lot. Now there’s a girl with time on her hands.
Her credit card statement line drawings are particularly impressive. Who knew they could look so good!
Over the period of one year, installation and performance artist Barbara Hashimoto collected and shredded all the junk mail that was sent to her house. She amassed 3,000 cubic feet of shredded material, which was used in installations in Los Angeles and Chicago. Included in one of the exhibitions was the piece above – one month of credit card bills.
Created for a college show, the sculpture above by artist Lori Merhige shows another useful way to recycle unwanted credit cards. We may not have a clue what it means, but then it’s art isn’t it?
Not all money related art is counter-cultural or a revolutionary attempt to bring down the government through idealistic art: credit card companies want you to feel like you can maintain a degree of self and personality, even on your bank cards. This guy has used eBoy’s isometric pop art to personally customise his credit card.
If you’re musical as well as creative and want to make your own credit card art, it’s easy. Simple guitar plectrums can be fashioned in mere minutes, and if you’ve entrepreneurial skills into the bargain, why not sell your wares to your music-making mates.
With money so easy to access nowadays, putting a meaningful message in front of people when they try to access their money is a smart move. And although it would be frustrating to come across if all you want if your cash quickly, and especially if you’re not great at maths, it might encourage people to think twice before spending money when they don’t need to. Still funny though.