Bilbo Calvez

I grew up in a Parisian suburb. At 22 and with a master’s degree in genetics (Maitrise de Biologie des organismes et des populations) in my pocket, I moved to Berlin in 1985 because I had heard from my mime partner that you don’t need money to survive there and that I barely had time to sleep in Paris between my jobs as a letter carrier, math teacher and mime in Montmartre – plus studying and volunteering at a radio station. In Berlin, I actually needed little money to survive and even managed to make a 16mm short film without a cent. Several films followed, including ‘Schön, dass wir nicht, wie die anderen sind’ a short film that won 4th place at the Green ‘und fremd bist du’ competition and ‘Rhythm Control’ which won first place at the Oberhausen Short Film Festival. Then I heard that RiasTV was looking for staff and I was hired there as an editor. After a year I quit and continued working as a freelance editor.

For more than 25 years, I then drove at 80 km/h on the highway of life. Just making sure that I got fuel in time, that is, money. I stared straight ahead and didn’t see an exit, but didn’t look for one either. It wasn’t particularly exciting, but it wasn’t particularly terrible either, and it could have gone on for years just like that. Well, something did happen in 2012. I was treated so rudely by a production company that I decided to hang the profession of film editing on the gallows. So to leave the highway. Without GPS and without a sense of direction. Screw the money, somehow I’ll survive.

After I finished two art projects “Publik-Privat” about facial and brain asymmetry and “Faces of Love” about long term love relationships, I started to deal more and more with the topic of money. How much money affects our environment, the lives of all people and all living things. Stress and competition.

Soon the thought came to me “What if there was no money at all?” I don’t mean that we should all go back to the forest and live only on exchange. Exchange would actually be money too, only it would be more impractical and complicated. To fight against man’s natural curiosity, that is, against development, progress and technology, would also be absurd in my opinion and would not last. Well, when I explained this idea at that time, most reacted highly allergic, not to say panic. A clear vision was missing. In 2014, therefore, I gave a speech as a time traveler in front of the Brandenburg Gate in Berlin, in which I described a future that would function in a society entirely without money, wars, borders and governments.