Mark Wagner works in several different forms but his most prolific is collage, using only US $1 bills. Some of these are fairly large and so the material cost alone is not insignificant. Of course using the dollar bill as material adds a layer of meaning to almost every image. The dragon below evokes Chinese imagery, bringing to mind the current economic conditions and our dependence on China's vast holding of US currency. It is also eating its tail like the mythical Ourobourus, the great serpent that encircles the earth symbolizing the beginning and end of everything... hmmm.
And is that a portrait of Chuck Close? I'm not 100% but if it is, then it becomes a fully loaded commentary on one of America's most successful and well known contemporary artists. The shrimp however does not imply anything overtly economic to me but does demonstrate the artist's delight in his medium.
To round things out I've also included a very wry book art piece, a collected set of either/ors, quite useful, no doubt, for hours of idle speculation.
Spend time browsing through his rich website: www.smokeinmydreams.com
(titles, dates and dimensions are not given on the artists website)