The exhibition includes a series of images composed with dollar bills cut and collaged on canvas and an inflatable Monopoly Man called “Mr. Moneybags”. In deconstructing the currency, he removes the actual value of the dollars it takes to make the piece and replaces it with
the value Chad applies to the finished artwork itself.
Chad carefully cuts strips of dollar bills and collages them together rendering striking images of US military weapons, tanks, helicopters, and planes. Chad manipulates the darker and lighter areas found on the paper currency to create the shadows and textures in the image. The pieces speak to the lack of control we have over the destination of our tax dollars and how such a large portion of those dollars end up in the hands of the military complex.
After creating the Tax Cuts military series, Chad began to examine his priorities. Becoming a homeowner, a husband, and a father, he began to realize that instead of life feeling more secure, the amount of personal fear and uncertainty had increased and his personal freedom had decreased. Chad thought about the explorers who set out on a quest not knowing what would await them in the new world and imagining that monsters might appear at any time. Chad changes his narrative to address those imagined monsters.
Rather than worship the dollar for what it is or what they can buy, Chad’s collages suggest that money can somehow be made to work for you. This point is further proven by the fact that Chad can claim the cost of making the artwork as a tax write off. The process is meditative for the artist and according to Chad, “...one of the only ways I can actually get out of my head and the rat race at the same time.”
The exhibition culminates with a sagging inflatable, Mr. Moneybags, depicting Rich Uncle Pennybags sitting on top of a brown moneybag. Chad’s inflatable reduces the character of the Monopoly man from an icon for Capitalism to a floppy impotent figure. Mr. Moneybags is a part of an ongoing series of inflatables that illustrate “a loss of prowess for select iconic characters at the end of their cultural relevance”.