Sculpture Made from 1 Million Euro 1-cent Coins goes on Display

A sculpture made of one million European one-cent coins worth 100,000 Euros and weighing up to four tons has been set up in the heart of the Austrian capital Vienna.

Artist Julia Bugram glued the coins together as a pair of hands holding on to each other as a way of raising awareness of the need for solidarity.

The hefty work of art has been installed next to St. Stephen's Cathedral (Stephansdom) in the center of Vienna and it will remain there until at least June. It was unveiled in the presence of Cathedral priest Toni Faber, the Mayor of Vienna Michael Ludwig (Social Democratic Party), as well as district mayor (Bezirksvorsteher) Markus Figl and Bugram, on April 5.

Newsflash obtained a statement from the organization behind the sculpture, Raising Hands, and they said that the coins alone weigh 2.3 tons.

After adding the weight of the glue and the pedestal, the whole structure is believed to weigh between three and four tons.

Scultpure, Coins, Chruch
Cathedral priest Toni Faber (left), Mayor Michael Ludwig (center left), artist Julia Bugram (center right) and district leader Markus Figl (right) presenting the artwork 'Raising Hands' at Vienna's Stephansplatz in April 2022. Kathpress, Henning Klingen/Zenger

Raising Hands explained: "However, the focus of the project is not on the money, but on working together and strengthening the community, overcoming hurdles together and making this solidarity visible through art."

Raising Hands, who say they stand for "cohesion in society" added: "Participation and the idea of solidarity are the focus. Raising Hands works on the principle of inclusion — everyone is invited to come together to form a community. Raising Hands makes the impossible possible.

"Processing 2.3 tonnes of coins is almost impossible for one person alone. Through cohesion in the community, the best results are often achieved and also the initially impossible. Every contribution counts. No matter in what form."

Bugram is an interdisciplinary artist working with graphics, installation, and objects. She lives and works in Vienna.

Raising Hands said: "Julia has experience in artistic project management and crowdfunding. Cross-discipline collaboration with other artists and experts from a wide variety of fields is a feature of their approach to finding new ideas and solutions for their work."

In terms of raw materials used, it is of course not the most expensive piece of contemporary art ever created.

That record belongs to U.K. artist Damien Hirst and his For the Love of God piece, a human skull encrusted with $15.6 million worth of diamonds.

This story was provided to Newsweek by Zenger News.