Project completed for Information Design and Data Visualization at the Portfolio Center. Instructor: Brittany Baum
Update and redesign the US currency system to reflect a more accurate national narrative and image.
In deciding whose story to tell in the new currency system, I focused on the land and its resources. The US is as geographically diverse as its population, and the movement of environmental conservation is imperative and relevant today. I aimed to not only represent this geographic diversity in the currency design, but also tell the stories of the historical figures who played crucial roles in our environmental narrative. I also made sure the idea of resource conservation and stewardship informed the material and physical size of the currency.
The proposed redesign places environmental conservation at the forefront of the American identity while celebrating the nation’s geographic diversity and honoring American figures who recognized the crucial connection between land and the people who care for it.
The new system features plastic polymer bills, which have a circulation life four times longer than the traditional paper bills. This transition would make energy efficiency, waste reduction, and overall sustainability a priority in currency production and circulation. The bills vary in length to allow for quick readability, and the largest bill is smaller than the current currency standard, in order to use fewer resources in manufacturing. The polymer material also features clear windows as improved security measures.