Tag Archives: monument

Roach Memorials: Mini monuments to our fallen, ubiquitous urban cohabitators

4 May

Reposted from: http://www.juxtapoz.com/Current/a-roach-remembered-bug-memorials

You know those people who get really mad if you step and/or kill a bug? Well, they will love the work of Minneapolis’ Carmichael Collective, who created this mini-street installation, A Roach Remembered, with the tagline: “This is a tribute to a cockroach that lived its life to the fullest. 2012 — 2012. RIP little buddy.”

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Jim Ricks’ Bouncy Dolmen

3 May

At first it’s a platform for laughter, play and utterances of the word “brilliant!”, but Jim Ricks’ Bouncy Dolmen project also points towards a perhaps underutilized tool in the creative mediation of heritage – play and humor. If only giving a whimsical full-body tactile engagement with a somewhat simplified formal representation of the iconic dolmen at Poulnabroune in the Burren Co. Clare, it satisfies some urge for permissible play with our canon of cultural monuments. (More info here: http://www.jimricks.info/bouncydolmen.html)

This of course also brings us to Jeremy Deller’s newest project for London’s Cultural Olympiad – the bouncy Stonehenge which recently made the headlines when it was unveiled in his native Glasgow: http://www.guardian.co.uk/culture/charlottehigginsblog/2012/may/02/bouncy-stonehenge-glasgow

“Repo History”

5 Dec

REPOhistory existed from 1989-2000

REPOhistory began in Manhattan in 1989 as a study group of artists, scholars, teachers, and writers focused on the relationship of history to contemporary society. It grew into a forum for developing public art projects based on history and a platform for creating them. For the past ten years REPOhistory’s goal has been “To retrieve and relocate absent historical narratives at specific locations in the New York City area through counter-monuments, actions, and events”. The work is informed by a multicultural re-reading of history which focuses on issues of race, gender, class and sexuality. We choose to create public art because we wanted to expand the audience for art by going outside the confines of the museum and gallery structure. By choosing to create work with strong, alternative social commentary we are drawing on a tradition in art that is often ignored; the legacy of the Berlin Dadaists, Russian Constructivists, the New York Photo League and contemporary organizations like Political Art Documentation/Distribution (PAD/D), Group Material and Grand Fury.

Through 6 major public projects and many smaller events, REPOhistory has continued to pursue this goal as an artist/scholar cooperative, along the way adding to its goals “to raise questions about the construction of history, to provide multiple viewpoints that encourage viewers to think critically, to explore how histories and their interpretations affect us today, and to engage with specific communities in order to facilitate their efforts to construct their own public histories”.

We believe that the arts are important to all aspects of society. The relationship between art, culture and society is often confused, vague and ambiguous. In the USA it has sparked the “Cultural Wars” of the 1980s and the early 1990s. Even today there are many members of the US Congress and Senate who want to abolish the National Endowment for the Art and the National Endowment for the Humanities. The arts will always be controversial. Societies change and the arts can be a powerful way of expressing these changes. However, the arts are essential for helping individuals find their place within society and for shaping a collective cultural identity.

Current Members Neill Bogan, Jim Costanzo, Tom Klem, Janet Koenig, Lisa Maya Knauer, Cynthia Liesenfeld, Chris Neville, Jayne Pagnucco, Leela Ramotar, Greg Sholette & George Spencer

Lapsed Members Ayishe Abraham, Todd Ayoung, Stephanie Basch, Betty-Sue Hertz, Carin Kuoni, Kara Lynch, Alan Michelson, Mark O’Brien, Lise Prown, Megan Pugh, Tess Timoney, Sarah Vogwill, Dan Wiley & Jody Wright

Steering Committee Neill Bogan, Jim Costanzo, Tom Klem, Lisa Maya Knauer & Cynthia Liesenfeld

REPOweb Jim Costanzo, creative director, Cynthia Liesenfeld, WebMistress
web developers: Sharon Denning, Russet Lederman, David Sansone with additional help from John Manick

With much sorrow we mourn the passing of our friend and colleague Ed Eisenberg.

Check out their work here: http://www.repohistory.org/work.html

“The Howling Mob Society”

5 Dec

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A Howling Mob Approach to History

The Howling Mob Society (HMS) is a collaboration of artists, activists and historians committed to unearthing stories neglected by mainstream history. HMS brings increased visibility to the radical history of Pittsburgh, PA through grassroots artistic practice. Our current focus is The Great Railroad Strike of 1877, a national uprising that saw some of its most dramatic moments in Pittsburgh.

Looking out over the burning Strip District from the safety of his office in Pittsburgh’s Union Station, Thomas Alexander Scott must have been humbled. Only days before, as president of the Pennsylvania Railroad, Scott famously suggested that impoverished and striking railroad workers be given “a rifle diet for a few days and see how they like that kind of bread.” Now, with the local Pittsburgh militia all but mutinied and the State Militia rapidly retreating, he must have wondered if his hard-line stance had backfired…

We’re imagining here what the events of July 21st and 22nd, 1877 must have looked like to one of that era’s most prominent robber barons. This approach follows a tradition of reporting history from the point of view of a powerful, moneyed elite. It is the last you’ll see of that perspective here. While the mainstream media—both past and present—frame events in terms of their effect on national economic interests, the Howling Mob investigates history through the experiences of common, working people.

“The I-75 Project” by Norm Magnusson

5 Dec

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I just happened upon a rather intriguing public art intervention project by artist Norm Magnusson. The “I-75 Project” found Magnusson installing industry grade public historical markers along Interstate 75. While the form and aesthetic of the markers are consistent with traditional, institutional, “authorized” markers, the texts Magnusson has written for the markers exploit this familiarity with historical authorization to give voice to critical perspectives on culture in the United States. The moments recorded are neither “important”, “singular” or “historical”. Rather they are an acknowledge of the monumental that arises out of an accumulation of moments of everyday, overlooked and omitted cultural experience.

Read more about the project here: http://www.aldrichart.org/exhibitions/past/magnusson.php

Magnusson’s project is most reminiscent of the approaches of Repo History to a collaborative and meaningful engagement between history and contemporary art. Read more about Repo History here: https://urbanheritages.wordpress.com/2011/12/05/repo-history/

It is also reminiscent of the work of Shaun Slifer and his Howling Mob Society project in Pittsburgh. Read a post about his project here: https://urbanheritages.wordpress.com/2011/12/05/the-howling-mob-society/