It looks like Alec Monopoly’s Christmas fund has matured. The anonymous street artist’s first L.A.-based solo show Park Place has opened at the LAB ART Gallery on La Brea Ave. It showcases 360 pieces inspired by the artist’s namesake, the monied mascot from the Hasbro board game.
Mr. Monopoly (formerly known as Rich Uncle Pennybags in the Parker Bros. incarnation) wears a top hat, a dapper suit, and a moustache thick enough to twirl as he counts his millions. In Alec’s renderings, the icon appears alongside those other cartoon poster boys for privilege, Richie Rich and Scrooge McDuck.
The artist appears bent on deconstructing symbols of wealth. To prove it, he’s selling one of his works for $3 million—er, in Monopoly money. Still, that’s 146 games’ worth of paper cash (each set currently comes supplied with $20,580), which, depending on your preferred discount retailer, translates to about $2,000 in actual out-of-pocket expenses. Publicist Cory Allen sets the work’s value at $10,000, so that’s a steal for a savvy collector. (Not to mention a boon for Hasbro, which stands to profit from the unorthodox sale.)
Allen says the unprecedented transaction is more than a gimmick; it’s also a chance for an aspiring art-lover to get in on the action. "With the economy the way it is, it’s about having the opportunity to do the legwork to make that investment happen. It’s not about being lucky. Anyone can start from go and work hard, and make it all come to life." A couple possible buyers have already been identified, so you’d better move fast.
Finally, Uncle Pennybags himself, Oscar-winning actor Adrien Brody, is donating two (two!) classic cars for the exhibit, to be transformed by the artist and re-sold: a 1964 Pontiac Catalina and a 1967 Rolls Royce Silver Shadow will be adorned with the artist’s signature style, in a twist on the board’s pewter game piece. (Not for the sportscar the tragic fate of the lowly iron.) According to Allen, Brody became a big supporter after buying one of the artist’s pieces for $20,000 back in 2011.
No word yet on whether Cracker Jack prizes and baseball cards will be accepted in lieu of the Brody vehicles.