Common Picnic was designed and commissioned especially for FIGMENT NYC’s 2015 Summer-Long Sculpture Program on Governor’s Island. It is an interactive sculpture that takes the form of a set of interconnected picnic tables for everyone to enjoy throughout the summer.
Today, a picnic is a casual meal that is eaten outdoors, but the word “picnic” was originally used to describe the collective contributions brought to a communal gathering. It was less about the setting, and more about the spirit of gathering.
I want to marry these definitions by taking a signifier for leisure in spacious, grassy areas and adapting it to emulate the experience of living in a crowded city where we share our personal space with strangers all the time. I want to highlight how we have to have a basic respect for one another in order to prevent chaos on a daily basis.
Common Picnic will offer many levels of group and solitary engagement, including: lounging, reading, socializing, playing, and of course picnicking! In fact, I will be hosting a series of community picnics throughout the summer where people can gather and meet while sharing some food.
In addition to granting me the opportunity to make something big in a really cool place, FIGMENT has also given me most of the funding to complete this project. However, I need your help to raise the rest. Your donation would go toward:
- lumber and supplies
- storage for the components, since I can’t fit them all in my studio at the same time
- transportation to Governor's Island (After all, it would be such a shame if I got everything ready in time, but couldn’t get it to the site!)
I will be posting updates on Kickstarter, but to see the very latest project progress, follow me on social media:
- Twitter - @RisaPuno
- Instagram - @risapuno
- Facebook - fb.com/risa.puno
- Tumblr - risapuno.tumblr.com
FIGMENT is a forum for the creation and display of participatory and interactive art by emerging artists across disciplines. FIGMENT began in July 2007 as a free, one-day participatory arts event on Governors Island in New York Harbor with over 2,600 participants. Since then, FIGMENT has grown significantly each year in number of projects, duration, participants, volunteers, fundraising capability, exhibitions, locations, overall level of commitment and participation, and public support.
Governor’s Island is located in New York City, off the southern tip of Manhattan. An easy ferry ride from Manhattan and Brooklyn, it is a great place for weekend outings with family, friends, and loved ones. Common Picnic will be located on the South Parade Ground. For directions and more information about Governor’s Island, please visit http://www.govisland.com/.
How long will the sculpture be on Governor’s Island?
Common Picnic will be installed for the big FIGMENT NYC festival on June 6-7, 2015 and it will remain on the island until September 25, 2015.
Can anyone use Common Picnic?
Yes!! When Governor's Island is open, the sculpture will be available for everyone to enjoy! The only times that sculpture will be off limits to the general public will be during a few events scheduled throughout the summer (like during the donors-only “thank you” potluck picnic).
When is the donors-only potluck picnic?
The donors-only potluck picnic will be on Saturday, June 27, 2015. Everyone who donates ANY amount of money (even a dollar!) gets invited to the donors-only potluck picnic, where you can meet and eat with all the other amazing people who helped make this project happen through Kickstarter. You can bring food for just yourself, or in the spirit of Common Picnic, you can bring enough food to share. Unless you have reserved a seat on the sculpture (by donating $25 or more), you might want to bring a blanket and/or chairs for sitting on the grass. Times and additional details will be included in the invite.
Are you organizing a community picnic for the general public?
The first community picnic will be on Saturday, July 25, 2015. Anyone and everyone can come and join the fun! You can bring food for just yourself, or in the spirit of Common Picnic, you can bring enough food to share. There are only 40 seats on the actual sculpture, so you might want to bring a blanket and/or chairs for sitting on the grass. To stay tuned for more community picnics, sign up for my mailing list at www.risapuno.com.
Risks and challenges
This is this first time I am completely fabricating a large-scale outdoor sculpture off-site. I usually build installations of this size directly on-site, so I generally don’t have to worry about transportation or storage. However, for this project, I have to create modular components ahead of time in my Brooklyn studio and then transport all the pieces to Governor’s Island at the end of May for assembly and installation.
I’ve already figured out exactly how I want to construct my sculpture so it's durable enough for all kinds of weather (as well as the half a million people that visit Governor’s Island over the course of the summer!). I've already placed my first lumber order, tested all my structural components, made all my jigs, and now I’m just starting production.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (14 days)