A priceless work

Earlier this month, Banksy set up a stand in Central Park to sell his pieces, anonymously, for $60 a pop. Although at auction his work has fetched more than $100K, he barely got a nibble. Tonight Dickson Schneider does one better, giving away his work for free in “Rhyme Nor Reason, the Free Art Project, San Francisco.” Best known for paintings of fashion models with huge, bovine eyes and lips plumped beyond belief, Schneider, who teaches painting at California State University East Bay, has created nearly 3,000 pieces specifically to gift them to strangers, pushing his modest wooden cart through Oakland Art Murmur and Art Basel Miami before taking his Free Art Project to Berlin and now, to San Francisco. “I consider this work to be a serious commentary on the social/political world of contemporary art,” Schneider says. “It is my exploration and critique of status, privilege, and access in a society dominated by monetary concerns. It is also a strange experience for the viewing public. How do you value something that is free?” Schneider is exhibiting collages, ink drawings, and watercolors, every piece an original. Will work fly off the walls, or will skeptics think it too good to be true? “Sometimes they don't take anything,” Schneider says. “It's the millionaire's dilemma: They can have anything, but what do they want? It's vexing.”

Fridays-Sundays. Starts: Nov. 3. Continues through Nov. 17, 2013

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