Flexible is a interactive public art sculptural workout area where people can stretch and exercise, or observe and think.
This particular public artwork is inspired by a number of things I came across in the neighborhood of Astoria, Queens. Isamu Noguchi was one, Socrates Sculpture Park was another, and a workout area by the East River was the other. As I familiarized myself with these distinct entities that make up the complex, culturally diverse environment of Astoria, I became interested in communicating my ideas through public art, more specifically through interactive sculpture. The "Flexible" sculptures are utilitarian platforms that stand at human scale and stretch at human length. They welcome exploration in a physical way, such as stretching or workout routines, while insisting mental examination because of their nontraditional assembly. Through interactive participation, connections made between the body and the mind will help this project exist, and help it be alive. "Flexible" is a continued study on physically interactive objects within the public realm:
THE FLEXIBLE SCULPTURES
The installation consists of three constructions that can be traversed through while in the pedestrian plaza at 40th Street and Queens Boulevard, under the elevated 7 train that connects Times Square to Flushing, Queens- this particular subway stop is the entrance to Sunnyside, Queens. The three constructions connote particular activities through their orientations, such as static, dynamic, and ballistic stretches. The placement is essential for them to be interactive. Over a million people will travel through this subway stop over the duration of the install. "Flexible" is currently in fabrication and will be installed the first week of July 2013 and will be up until July 2014.
The project is a joint project with the Boys and Girls Club of Astoria, Queens, the Boys and Girls Club of Sunnyside, Queens, and the Department of Transportation New York City Urban Art program, as part of the pARTners program track. Working with the kids at the Boys and Girls Club, I put together workshops that included collage exercises, drawing, and model building. We found various ways to represent common forms into physically imagined interactive puzzles. The final designs were created within those environments. Flexible has been through a few changes, naturally, and now I'm starting this campaign to raise some money for the challenges of making sure it is safe for the public.
I've received support from the Department of Transportation and the Foundation for Contemporary Arts, which has helped tremendously, and Kickstarter is the final hurtle in raising funds that will help in seeing the project completion. To cover the complete budget, I need to raise $7,000. I have set a modest Kickstarter budget of $3,000, but please do not stop there. Your donation will help purchase essential materials, fabrication and installation costs, including safety mats, steel, paint, contracted labor or sculpture mounting.
Any help will be greatly appreciated.
Risks and challenges Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
I cannot predict anymore unique challenges, I've been through quite a few with this project thus far, and I can't begin to imagine anymore. With that said I don't believe they will occur because this is simply one of the final steps within the hardest part of this project, pulling together the funds necessary for completion. Other than that, the site permits have been acquired and the community board has elected the project continue.
Making and installing the work is the easier and most natural of the two for me, but who knows, maybe more obstacles will occur, but I'm trying to stay flexible. If they do arise I will continue to maneuver through them.
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