The old forms of money aren't working anymore--no one has any--so bartering and swapping are becoming more popular as a way to exchange goods for services without laying out any cash. In Lewes East Sussex, they have printed their own money--the Lewes pound--and will be using it as currency.
Now an artist is trying the same thing in Petticoat Lane, with her S-COOP coins. Petticoat Lane is an old market street with merchants selling cut-rate fabric and clothes from their stalls. When you get change from a purchase you can get a S-COOP coin and buy a white ice-cream at Monochrome Ice Cream Parlour.
The tokens date back to the 1900's, when English co-operative societies used their own currency for food and fuel. In the ice cream parlour there is an exhibit of old coins from these collectives in Scotland and the Isle of Wight, as well as brochures and explanations of this historical precedent.
There is also ice cream in many flavours, all of them white. This is "a delicious translation of the revolutionary concept of abstraction." It is also quite good ice cream.
Minerva Cuevas, the Mexican artist, "proposes cultural experiments that shadow existing structures and systems, and are realised in spaces that range from the public realm to museums and the internet." Whitechapel Gallery
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