Two Swedish artists want to pay someone £1,754 a month to do ‘whatever they want’

Two Swedish artists want to pay someone £1,754 a month to do ‘whatever they want’
(Photo: Shutterstock)

Being paid for doing nothing.

It’s a dream scenario that many of us aspire to. But it would never happen in real life – right?

Two Swedish artists are making that dream a reality for one lucky individual by offering the chance to apply for a ‘job’ that has no actual work requirements.

Gothenburg’s Simon Goldin and Jakob Senneby are looking for an ‘Eternal Employee’, who will be paid £1,754 a month to do whatever they feel like in Korsvägen, a public square and transport hub in the events district of the city.

“The position holds no duties or responsibilities,” says the job description.

“Whatever the employee chooses to do constitutes the work.”

What’s the job?

Despite that description, there actually are a couple of light duties that the successful candidate must carry out – turning on the platform lights of a train station at the start of the day.

“The station at Korsvägen has a time clock where the employee is expected to check-in and check-out,” say the artists.

“The time clock is connected to the lights above the platform, turning on a stronger fluorescent light” which they dub, a “working light.”

Korsvägen is a public square and transport hub in the events district of Gothenburg (Photo: Shutterstock)

The employee is not required to stay within the premises of the station throughout the day, and the conditions of employment include all the usual benefits like pension provisions, and even holiday entitlement – in case you need to take a holiday from your holiday.

You’ll also be required to collect and make “accessible secondary mediation”, such as “news stories, reportages, rumors, jokes and urban legends that the project generates over time” in an effort to stop yourself going mad from boredom.

How do I apply?

Unfortunately, applications for the role don’t actually open until 2025, after a seven year long “investment period”, which began in 2018. So you might want to check back in six years.

The job is contracted to be full time and of indefinite duration, and you’ll be expected to move to Gothenburg should you be successful. Should the employee resign or retire, a new employee is recruited.

The artists expect the artwork to function as “a measure of our growing inequality,” and say “Eternal Employment questions the very notions of growth, productivity and progress which are at the core of modernity.”

What if the money runs out?

After all, £1,754 a month to essentially flick a light switch on and off doesn’t sound like the most business-minded of ideas.

“The endless duration of this employment is feasible because money pays better than work,” say the artists.

“As long as we live in a society where the return on capital is substantially higher than the average increase in wages, Eternal Employment is kept afloat.

“Should the money run out after 25, 50, or 100 years, that would imply an historical shift in the relation between return on capital and wages. A sustained period in which work pays better than money.

“If this happens, the employment comes to an end. The ‘working lights’ go out over the platform at Korsvägen, never to be lit again.”