La liberté guidant le peuple 2019, bitcoin rebus


In front of 154/156 rue d’Aubervilliers in Paris, the artist Pascal Boyart has created a mural that represents a reinterpretation of the famous painting by Delacroix “La liberté guidant le peuple”. The architecture of the image faithfully reflects the original 1830 version, re-contextualizing it with the latest revolts of the “gilet jaune”. The work was made on the occasion of the tenth anniversary of the generation of the first Bitcoin block. In fact, the image conceals a “cryptographic rebus” – some details of the work represent a “seed phrase”, that is a combination of words that decode a private key of a wallet containing 0.288.76769 Bitcoin (about 900 euro). The puzzle was solved on January 13, 2019, and the words are: “banquier usure mensonge peuple combat espoir union citoyen conduire triomphe horizon jaune” (Banker wear lie people fight hope union citizen drive triumph horizon yellow). Like other previous works by the artist, this one reports a QR-Code Bitcoin signature, useful for crowdfunding but also as a sure artistic “signature”. The technology of the blockchain is here celebrated as a screaming instrument of emancipation: for citizens, from the general system of usury and lying, as declaimed by the words that form the seed phrase; for the artist into the art market, finally free from intermediaries thanks to the QR-Code Bitcoin. Perhaps too much, this proclamation leaves the observer disenchanted and curious about the future scenario in which the Marianne de France will act as an unconscious “testimonial”. Chiara Ciociola


Fresque Liberté – Delacroix inspire Pboy – JT 19/20 France 3