Fair Trade : The Globo Dollar : Nicky Enright

The Globo Dollar is “a fusion of the legal tender of over twenty five countries including the US Dollar, and evokes a vision of world unity and progress, while simultaneously suggesting the ever-increasing reach of corporate globalization.

In the globalized world, ‘developed’ countries exploit ‘developing’ countries by taking advantage of their drastically unequal economies, which the former themselves help to create. This exploitation is most evident in the fact that the incomes of people in the ‘developing’ world are a fraction of what their time and labor would be worth in the ‘developed’ world. 

Corporations have also outpaced governments in terms of going global, and also don’t abide by any one nation’s rules. Consequently, these conglomerates have been influencing governments and helping create a situation where money is over-valued on their home turf and under-valued everywhere else. This state of affairs results in the creation of a vast and enduring global underclass that can barely make a living, regardless of how hard they work or how much money they manage to save.


The Globo Dollar serves as both an illustration of this predicament and as an alternative. Like the American Dollar, the Globo represents a currency backed only by power. The US Dollar also happens to be the official currency of various nations and it’s remarkable to note that one Dollar in the US is worth more than that same Dollar in Ecuador, for instance. And because there are so many currencies in the world, purchasing power is not actually linked to the physical substance of money. As an alternative, the Globo evokes the unifying power of the Euro and also confronts exploitation by making the adoption of an international minimum wage theoretically possible. 

Currently the Globo exists as a large framed print and as actual bills which are distributed amongst the real-world economy, constantly sparking disbelief and intense debate. This work also underscores the act of ‘making money’ – not only in the sense of earnings, but also in the sense of a nations official currency. It summons up the abstraction that underlies all money, and emphasizes the need to transform the stark inequalities of a globalized labor force.”

Artist Nicky Enright was born in Ecuador and currently lives in New York. The Globo Dollar was included in the Exit Art exhibition, ‘Global National’

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