SHOW ME THE MONEY

Frequent Flyer Destinations - - TRAVEL STYLE - WORDS AND PHO­TOG­RA­PHY BY STEPHEN CHRISANTHUS

“I WENT TO COL­LEGE FOR REAL ES­TATE AND CON­STRUC­TION,” SAYS E. “I NEVER SAW ART AS A WAY TO MAKE A LIV­ING, I STARTED DO­ING WHAT I LOVED AND BE­CAME SUC­CESS­FUL.” MONEY WASN’T AL­WAYS THE THEME OF HIS WORK AND HE ONLY BE­CAME “MIS­TER E” AF­TER IT DID.

So ev­ery­body likes to make money, but there is a new force in the art world that lit­er­ally makes it. Known only as Mis­ter E, the 29 yr old artist based out of Del­ray Beach, Florida, known for his col­or­ful paint­ings of US cur­rency is mak­ing waves of money, and celebri­ties are lin­ing up to get their hands on it.

Orig­i­nally from New Jersey but raised in South Florida since the age of ten, Mis­ter E has made Del­ray Beach his home as well as the “E Trea­sury”. He re­cently ex­panded his space last year, and says he isn’t go­ing any­where. “I have a work­ing stu­dio I love to come home to,” ex­plains Mis­ter E. “I want peo­ple to know I am in Del­ray Beach, I think it makes it more exciting for them when they have to drive here to buy a paint­ing. Del­ray is in just the right place.”

Mis­ter E was the hit of Art Basel in Mi­ami this past year with his on­slaught of celebrity sup­port­ers and South Beach smooth style. Mi­ami is def­i­nitely his turf and his con­nec­tion to the city is seen through­out. He made it rain with $100,000,000 in his sig­na­ture 100’s at last years Ul­tra Mu­sic Fes­ti­val. The ex­clu­siv­ity of his art work reaches into the cul­ture of Mi­ami and is even por­trayed in Mi­ami’s world fa­mous clubs Story and LIV; when you buy a bot­tle over $10,000 it ar­rives to the ta­ble in a Mis­ter E piece of art work, sig­ni­fy­ing the sheer mag­ni­tude of money be­ing spent. He also has pieces in hip ho­tels, such as The Sag­amore, that line the fa­mous neon lit beach­front streets. Plans for an ex­clu­sive night­club fo­cus­ing on art are al­ready in the works and is ten­ta­tively sched­uled to open dur­ing Art Basel this year. Think Soho House meets Warhol’s fac­tory.

Re­cent pa­trons have in­cluded Mi­ley Cyrus, Lionel Richie, Adam San­dler and Floyd May­weather. Cyrus was such a

fan that she con­tacted Mis­ter E through Instagram and then flew him out to her house in Cal­i­for­nia to add some color to her new crib. Af­ter fin­ish­ing San­dler’s Happy Gil­more piece he per­son­ally de­liv­ered it to him at the Boca Ra­ton Re­sort where they had din­ner. Mis­ter E has an invit­ing qual­ity about him that sucks you in, as does his art. You feel like you have been friends for years af­ter meet­ing him for the first time. Take his work- he takes an im­per­sonal ob­ject that most of the world is fa­mil­iar with and per­son­al­izes it. The cus­tom piece for Lionel Richie in­fused as­pects of real mean­ing to the leg­endary mu­si­cian, and upon see­ing it Richie was blown away.

The fa­mous 100 dol­lar bill seems to be the key. It all stems from an orig­i­nal bill, which is the heart be­hind all of the cre­ations. The se­rial num­ber of the bill is fea­tured through­out the en­tire body of work and has sig­nif­i­cance to the artist. The orig­i­nal US ban­knote is en­cap­su­lated in 100 lbs of Lucite and cur­rently re­sides in his work­shop. When asked if he would sell it, Mis­ter E re­sponded, “Ev­ery­thing should be for sale”. “I don’t get at­tached to art, it’s like later see­ing a lit­ter of pup­pies you gave away.” Cur­rently you can find Mis­ter E’s work in gal­leries New York City, Chicago, West Palm Beach and soon to be Paris.

De­spite the celebrity and the fan­fare he takes his craft se­ri­ously. “Art is not an easy thing to be known for. I wouldn’t be do­ing this un­less I could be Jeff Koons. I want to be re­spected in fine art.” Mis­ter E has no lack of am­bi­tion ei­ther. When asked about his long-term goals he said he wanted the US to pro­duce an un­lim­ited run of his money and never have to spend US cur­rency on any­thing. When asked the most ridicu­lous ques­tion he re­ceives about his mul­ti­col­ored mil­lions, he replies “Is it real?”

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