Noney Rhymes with Money

What’s “noney“? Well…

In 2003, Obadiah Eelcut began circulating 10,000 Noney notes. Each note is a hand-drawn, hand-printed and hand-signed piece of art. Each note can also be traded for things. The result is an experimental combination of printmaking, performance and public art… an experience unlike that of traditional currency.


From Pennylicious

While Noney notes have the same basic dimension, look and feel of government-issued money, they don’t resemble any other currency. Noney is a new design. Ten different faces show people of Rhode Island with their favorite bird and favorite vegetable. These people entered a contest to appear on Noney. They represent a variety of lives and professions. Among them are a painter, a community advocate, a librarian, a photographer, a waiter and musicians.

The illustrations on Noney are hand-drawn, then hand-screenprinted onto archival, acid-free sheets of polyethylene fiber, a material that’s lighter and tougher than paper. After printing, each note is editioned by hand in red ink with a number indicating its print order. Each note is then signed in black ink. Noney’s total print run is 10,000 notes: 1,000 of each face.

The website lacks any current info on the project so it may or may not be ongoing. 

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Categories: Artwork, Print-related

7 Responses to “Noney Rhymes with Money”

  1. RL Tillman says:

    Eelcut sounds like an awesome new relief printmaking medium.

  2. kirkamaralsnow says:

    Eelcut is pseudonym used by the artist Alec Thibodeau of Providence. He also releases prints and multiples as Ink Ape. Alec self-publishes most of his work, but he has worked collaboratively with tinyshowcase and DWI letterpress. There might be a transcript from a panel discussion for the exhibition Pocket Change on where I heard him talk about the project back in 2006.

  3. jasonurban says:

    Thanks for the info, K. In just one comment you manage to pack in all kinds of fun stuff.

    Thibodeau’s website: features some great work. And both and have been on our radar and will probably receive some Printeresting attention in the future.

    I am left wondering why “Eelcut”? But some things are better left a mystery.

  4. Jay says:

    It’s hard to run into Noney, these days, but they are pretty gorgeous.

    I figure it was about a year ago, maybe more, NPR did a piece on local currency. Noney isn’t “legitimate”, but there are ways to print your own local currency – so long as its value is tethered to the almighty $.

  5. kirkamaralsnow says:

    Who knows…. Eelcut is an old school name for a type of catfish I think

  6. Chris says:

    Doesn’t this reek of BOGGS from years ago??

    James Stephen George Boggs is not a con artist, he’s a talented artist who deftly renders his own currency and “spends” it. Struck by the value of money, and what paper notes represent, he draws U.S. dollar bills, English pound notes, Swiss francs, and other forms of paper money; then he barters his illustrious artwork in lieu of cash to willing merchants who agree to honor his currency for services and products.

    Boggs does not sell his “money” directly, as Weschler learns, nor does he attempt to pass his drawings off as actual bills. For Boggs, the elaborate transaction of negotiation is a crucial element in his work, and the tangible proof of his success–receipts and proper change–is included in the final product. Of course, treasury departments from around the world are anything but pleased; the second half of the book deals extensively with the artist’s court battle with the Bank of England. As Weschler notes, Boggs is not the first to question the value of money through art (Larry Rivers, Pablo Picasso, Timm Ulrichs, Adolf Wölfi, and Jurgen Harten are just some artists who have put currency to the test), but the author finds in Boggs’s work an ideal subject for opening a probing inquiry into the economy of money, especially timely at the end of the 20th century as paper currency–which once directly represented precious-metal coins–evolves into “binary sequences of pulses racing between computers.”

  7. RL Tillman says:

    Hi Chris. Thanks for reading Printeresting.

    I’m not sure what you mean by “reek” but the implication is pejorative. Do you mean to say that this work is too derivative of Boggs? It seems to me that Noney fits into a very different currency-art niche. In any case, certainly there’s ample conceptual wiggle-room in the area of currency for many artists; especially if those artists are intrigued by printed matter. You might want to check our archives in this regard.