2funBasTards: BasTard, Can You Spare a Dime?

2funBasTards is a performance collective with many members. Chris Wildrick, Tom Bleigh, and Tom Cranley were the performers for this piece.

2funBasTards was invited to participate in a show, GroupGroup, at the Commonwealth Gallery in Madison, Wisconsin, about collaborative art groups. However, the gallery charged a fee for the use of its space, and each group was asked to pay part of the fee.

2funBasTards decided to use their performance to raise enough money to pay for their part of the fee.

Jason built a money box with a glass front and a slot at the top. Tom Cranley went to the show’s reception with his cell phone. Tom Bleigh and Chris called in to his phone at regular intervals. When Tom Cranley got a call, he passed it off to a nearby gallery visitor, saying it was for them. Chris and Tom Bleigh then plied the gallery goer for money, asking them to donate whatever they liked for the sake of the show, just like an NPR listener.

Many visitors donated money, and 2funBasTards raised significantly more than they needed to pay the gallery’s fee. They gave the box, which had to be broken to be opened, to the show’s curator. He kept the box, unopened, and paid their share of the fee himself.


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