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For Belarusian artist, money is art

- Associated Press - Thursday, February 28, 2013

MINSK, BELARUS (AP) - Art is literally money for Belarusian artist Igor Arinich.

For several years, Arinich has used Soviet-era banknotes to create artistic images. One work he is particularly proud of is a replica of a painting by early 20th-century Russian artist Kuzma Petrov-Vodkin, which took half a year and about 3,000 banknotes to make.

He uses a special glue to fix small pieces of notes, which he buys at local flea markets, to a sketch of a future image. Each work takes months to make.

Arinich's works include portraits of Soviet founder Vladimir Lenin, Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez and Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko. Arinich has been successful in selling them to customers in the 10-million ex-Soviet nation and neighboring Russia.

Arinich says he has sought to "transform people's view of money."

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