Banca Rotta (Switzerland, 18th century, coniferous wood)

Money-changer’s table sawed in half
Est. 128 x 123 x 76 cm
Podium: wood, textile, 200 x 195 x 20 cm
Photo: Gianmarco Bresadola

Banca Rotta is a seventeenth-century money changer’s table, broken in two. The story goes that when a money lender in North Italy became insolvent, their trading bench would be broken – so the word for ‘bankrupt’ comes from the Italian for broken bench, ‘banca rotta’. Each Banca Rotta is a realization of this image, titled and dated according to the specifics of the antique table and the year it was sawn in half. The work includes a manual available to collectors in a numbered but unlimited edition, which increases in price with each edition sold – a contradiction of the usual logic of the limited edition whereby scarcity increases demand.

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