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A traveling, community-oriented art installation stopping in cities around America to barter objects and stories with folks.
A traveling, community-oriented art installation stopping in cities around America to barter objects and stories with folks.
395 backers pledged $26,881 to help bring this project to life.

About this project

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$26,881

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Update #1 We've reached our goal! Thanks to everyone who contributed, shared, and encouraged us. If you just found out about our project - you can still make a pledge and be a part of The Trading Tortoise. Our goal was based on the minimum amount we'd need to complete our tour as listed on our website but any additional funds raised will go towards adding more stops to the tour and reaching more people! 

Update #2 Thanks for all the suggestions for new stops. We've added Minneapolis, MN (venue TBA), Sioux Falls, SD (Ipso Gallery), West Los Angeles (Giant Robot 2), and East Los Angeles (ReForm School) so far and are working on adding more. 

The Trading Tortoise is a traveling art project created by Souther Salazar & Monica Choy with the goal of creating a unique community experience while exploring America through objects and stories. The plan is to make a sculptural installation (in the form of a large tortoise-shaped trading post) that we can set up at different stops throughout the nation. 

At each stop, we'll set up our Trading Tortoise installation and invite people to bring an object, story or creation and exchange it for something else special we've found or traded for along the way. We hope to connect people in different places in America in this way, through a network of traded treasures, and through a mutual love of giving and receiving in a non-monetary exchange. 

Every person has a unique object or story that only they can bring to this project.  Each item we receive will be tagged with the person's name, location, and a number and documented on our website so people can follow our trades and see where their item eventually traveled to.

We will also be participating in additional creative events in the communities we visit when possible, such as Souther's solo art show and talk at Narwhal Projects in Toronto and a pro bono collaborative mural project planned for Children's Hospital Boston.

In between the scheduled events, we'll be exploring whatever we can along the way and documenting the overall adventure on our blog with photos, videos, and artwork, as well as in a series of 5 printed Trading Tortoise zines. 

The adventure culminates in an art show Souther has scheduled for May 2013 at Jonathan Levine Gallery in New York City. The art show will feature a new body of work including paintings, drawings, and an on-site installation of sculptures inspired by our trades and travels. 

We have a schedule of proposed stops on our website and encourage you to follow our adventure online, and suggest places you'd like to see the Trading Tortoise visit or events for us to take part in. We hope to see you in our travels!

We need your support!

We've estimated that we'll travel almost 18,000 miles across America for our project and are asking for the minimum amount needed to complete our goals. We'll need art materials & supplies and help with the expenses of the trip. We plan to find places to stay with friends and kind strangers along the way to save on lodging costs. 

What your pledges go toward: 

  • Art materials for building the Trading Tortoise installation
  • Gas & Car maintenance
  • Help with our general traveling expenses
  • Production & Shipping costs to create and send rewards to you

PLEASE NOTE: Kickstarter funding is "all-or-nothing". We will need to reach our goal within the set time or our project doesn't get funded at all.

What if we exceed our goal? 

That would be awesome! We can add more stops to our tour, more people can interact with our installation, and we won't have to live on just ramen.

Thank You! 

We are appreciative of any help you can give us and hope that the rewards we're offering are good incentives. Even if you can't pledge, please consider sharing our project with your friends. Thanks! Souther & Monica  

www.tradingtortoise.com

EVENTS

We will be participating in other art events in between trading sessions. Here are some we have planned so far: 

June 15: Souther solo show opening at Narwhal Gallery (Toronto)

late-June: Ed Emberley-inspired collaborative mural with Caleb Neelon at Children's Hospital Boston (In conjunction with a display of original work by Mr. Emberley) 

May 2013: Souther solo show opening at Jonathan Levine Gallery (NYC)

Proposed stops & dates listed here on the Trading Tortoise website: Schedule

REWARDS

$10 and up: A postcard of Souther's painting "We Don't Know Where This River Goes" with a handwritten 'Thank You' note on the back and 2 stickers with artwork by Souther & Monica 

$15 and up: All $10 rewards and a 1" button set with artwork by Souther & Monica

$25 and up: All $15 rewards and a travel-themed mix CD (exclusive to this Kickstarter Project) compiled and mixed by Souther and Way Grimace Records, cover art by Souther, and music generously contributed by: Built Like Alaska, Charlie Campbell (Goldcard)* & Megan Mishler, Dear Nora (Katy Davidson), Discombobulated Ventriloquist (Ron Rege Jr.), Kid Mud*, Little Wings (Kyle Field)*, Lovehandles (Tommy Yasuhara)Jason Lytle (Grandaddy)*, Sara Lov (Devics), Sonny Smith (Sonny & the Sunsets), The Good Luck Thrift Store Outfit, The Preservation, Thombie, Threads of Grass*, Willy Tea Taylor & more 

*Previously unreleased tracks

Read more about the musicians here in Souther's blog post. 

$40 and up: All $25 rewards and a subscription to 5 monthly travel zines we'll make and mail while on the road

$55 and up: All $40 rewards and a one-color silkscreened t-shirt with artwork by Souther (screen-printing donated by Apparel Graphics)

$100 and up: All $55 rewards and a 20"x28" litho print of Souther's painting, "Crashlander"

$150 and up: All of $100 rewards and a custom Choybot plush friend handmade especially for you; created while on the road -- Pledgers in this category can customize their Choybot's color & species

$200 and up: All $100 rewards and a one-of-a-kind "Scrapper" by Souther (A cross between a zine, a scrapbook, and a doodle pad)-- no two Scrappers are alike. Each one has hand-selected bits and pieces of layered process and content, lovingly assembled as a mini art book. Possible ingredients: misc. zine pages/outtakes, xerox mishaps, collage elements, ink and paint tests, notes from beyond, hidden surprises, original doodles, pieces of prints, sketches and stories. *numbered in order of creation

$300 and up: All $100 rewards and a one-of-a-kind framed print/drawing with hand-embellished details by Souther 

$550 and up: An original one-color ink drawing by Souther; created while on the road (professionally framed) -- When drawings are completed, pledgers in this category will be contacted and will select pieces in the order their pledges were received

$850 and up: An original mixed media drawing by Souther; created while on the road (professionally framed) -- When drawings are completed, pledgers in this category will be contacted and will select pieces in the order their pledges were received

$1500 and up: An original 10"x20" mixed media painting on wood panel by Souther; inspired by our travels -- When paintings are completed, pledgers in this category will be contacted and will select pieces in the order their pledges were received

FAQ

  • Yes! Everyone who pledges for an original piece of artwork will also get all the $100 rewards. I didn't realize that we didn't specify it. It's too late to change the posted rewards, but I will message everyone who's already donated to those levels to let them know that they will also get all the $100 rewards. Thanks!

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  1. Select this reward

    Pledge $1 or more About $1.00

    Our sincere thanks for contributing to our project! Every dollar helps.

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    A postcard of one of Souther's paintings with a handwritten 'Thank You' note and 2 stickers with artwork by Souther & Monica. (International pledges: please add $2 shipping)

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    All of $10 rewards and a button 4-pack with artwork by Souther & Monica. (International pledges: please add $2 shipping)

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    All of $15 rewards and a travel-themed mix CD exclusive to this Kickstarter project with cover art by Souther. (International pledges: please add $2 shipping)

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    Pledge $40 or more About $40

    All of $25 rewards and subscription to 5 monthly travel zines (June - Oct 2012) that we'll make and mail while on the road. (International pledges: please add $5 shipping)

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    Pledge $55 or more About $55

    All of $40 rewards and 1-color silkscreened t-shirt with Souther's artwork. (International pledges: please add $5 shipping)

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    Pledge $100 or more About $100

    All of $55 rewards and 20"x28" print of Souther's painting "Crashlander". (International pledges: please add $5 shipping)

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    Pledge $150 or more About $150

    All of $100 rewards and a custom Choybot plush friend handmade especially for you; created while on the road. Pledgers in this category can customize their Choybot's color & species. (International pledges: please add $5 shipping)

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    Pledge $200 or more About $200

    All of $100 rewards and a one-of-a-kind Scrapper by Souther (a hand bound mini-book with original doodles, misc. zine pages/outtakes, xerox mishaps, cutout leftovers, pen tests, notes from beyond, pieces of prints, sketches, etc.) (International pledges: please add $5 shipping)

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    Pledge $300 or more About $300

    All of $100 rewards and a one-of-a-kind framed print with hand-embellished details by Souther. (International pledges: please add $10 shipping)

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    Pledge $550 or more About $550

    An original one-color ink drawing by Souther; created while on the road (professionally framed). -- When drawings are completed, pledgers in this category will be contacted to select pieces in the order their pledges were received.

    (International pledges: please add $40 shipping)

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    Pledge $850 or more About $850

    An original mixed media drawing by Souther; created while on the road (professionally framed). -- When drawings are completed, pledgers in this category will be contacted to select pieces in the order their pledges were received.

    (International pledges: please add $40 shipping)

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    Pledge $1,500 or more About $1,500

    An original 10"x20" mixed media painting on wood panel by Souther; inspired by our travels. -- When paintings are completed, pledgers in this category will be contacted to select pieces in the order their pledges were received.

    (International pledges: please add $40 shipping)

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Funding period

- (19 days)