"And Then I Said" (Bench Stories)
This project will be a part of Art in Odd Places 2011: RITUAL, a public art festival of installations and performances that will occur along the length of 14th Street in Manhattan from October 1st-10th.
My project explores the public rituals, habits and norms of pedestrian life. New York’s pedestrian culture is infamous for its overwhelming masses of people, cut-off from others, each immersed in their own daily agenda. However, when paused on a park bench or in the subway, we open up our bubble and allow for the possibility of connection with others. "And Then I Said" focuses on moments of anticipation, tension, power and vulnerability when we connect with others in public. The project will facilitate a moment for participants to contemplate the conflation of public and private space in pedestrian life. Two sound boxes will be installed, one in Union Square and another on a bench on the subway platform of the uptown F/M 14th Street station. The boxes will play the stories that have been collected for this project. Participants will have the opportunity to sit on the bench, and experience a moment of connection with another person as they listen to the stories through the sound boxes.
How It Will Happen
I am currently collecting stories from strangers and friends everywhere for the project via my website and by approaching strangers in parks in New York city and asking them to participate. I will build the boxes in a sculpture studio, edit the stories for clarity using editing software, curate the stories and put them onto an audio player which will be attached to a speaker inside the sound boxes.
Where The Funds Will Go
For this project, funds are required for the following: The bulk of the funds needed are to pay for the usage of a sculpture studio where I will construct the sound boxes and have a sculpture expert assistant/friend help me make sure I'm doing everything well. The rest of the money goes to building supplies and tools, travel, creating and testing models, audio and electronic equipment, the phone number I set up to collect the stories as well as publicity materials.
How You Can Participate in the Project!
Please feel free to share your story and participate in the project! You can read all about it and see the instructions for calling here. And if you will be in New York City during the festival, come by and participate in the work when it is installed!
- (45 days)