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Why Did The K Foundation Burn a Million Quid?

August 15, 2017 | by Hannah Marshall

Tags: faber and faber, the justified ancients of mu mu, 2023

A Public Hearing, The Black-E, Liverpool, 23rd August 2017.

In the early hours of 23 August 1994, Jimmy Cauty & Bill Drummond, then operating under the name The K Foundation, burnt £1,000,000 of their own money, in an abandoned boat house on the Isle of Jura. The money was all the cash they had left from their careers in the music industry. The burning was filmed by a man named Gimpo, and written about in the Observer by a journalist named Jim Reid.

People wanted to know why the K Foundation burnt the money. Cauty & Drummond did not have an adequate answer. Cauty & Drummond felt it was for others to tell them why. Cauty & Drummond signed an agreement to stop trying to explain the burning of the money for a period of 23 years. This was done to provide adequate time for others to tell them why they burnt the money. The agreement took on the name The Twenty Three Year Moratorium, and was backdated to the night of the burning. This moratorium will be complete on 23 August 2017.

On the evening of 23 August 2017 a public hearing is to be held at The Black E in Liverpool, to find out if there is an answer to the question. This public hearing is to be chaired by the artist Tom James. A panel of five people will be brought together, to each explain why they think the K Foundation burnt the money. The panel includes: Jeremy Deller, artist; Ann Pettifor, economist; Tom Hodgkinson, editor of The Idler; Annebella Pollen, art historian; and Clive Martin, journalist.

Various witnesses to the original burning and subsequent events will be called for testimony. These witnesses include: Gimpo, Jim Reid, Mick Houghton, Chris Brook, Angie Sammons, Craig McLean and John Higgs. Note: neither J Cauty nor B Drummond will be amongst the witnesses, as they have nothing further to add.

Why Did The K Foundation Burn A Million Quid? is part of the three day Welcome To The Dark Ages event, to celebrate the end of the Twenty Three Year Moratorium. The audience will be composed of the 400 ticket holders for the event. All tickets have been sold. No guest lists. No exceptions.