The "1/1" project began in New York City in 2007.
Through an extensive process, I assumed one of the prerogatives of states: the act of minting money.
I chose as a base material the currency that during the last century was established as a global canon, the US dollar, and more specifically its minimum unit, the penny.
Initially made of solid copper, this coin was later minted using cheaper alloys with a copper cladding. These variations in materials trace a historical picture of the economic evolution, crisis and expansions of capitalism during the 20th century and beyond.
At the time that I presented this work, the price of copper and the speculative nature of the monetary system had generated a paradox: the value of the metal contained in a penny was higher than the monetary value it represented.
Smelting pennies and selling the resulting copper ingots was a profitable business.
In December 2006, the United States government passed a law to prevent the currency from merging. It also limited the number of pennies an individual can carry beyond his borders.
Violating these two norms, I took to several hundreds pennies from the United States to europe. Those coins were minted between 1952 and 2007.
After making a mould of one of the pennies, 100 of the original coins were melted. That metal was used to fabricate 60 replicas. The number difference is due to the loss of material the casting process entails.
They were presented on one of the plates of an old cast iron scale, and their sale price corresponded to the market price of one ton of copper, whatever it was at the time the sale of the artwork was consummated.