Saturday, April 12, 2008

Art is not a crime.

Today I helped (or aided and abetted, as the cops might claim) my friend Ash Mae set up some performance art. I love her ideas - they are centered around community and focus on involving "real," "normal" people and getting them to engage.


This show is called "Grow." It consists of several hundred old catalog cards that rest, cut up, tempting most students to steal stacks of them from the library. Two cards are sewn together with wildflower seeds inside. We taped blank cards to the wall and then stapled these filled cards to them - some even have drawings on them. The instructions are as follows:

I love it. It reminds me a little of the giveaway going on over at Petit Elefant. Anyway - I tore tape for hours as we cracked jokes and interacted 
with the passers-by. People met their neighbors for the first time after
living nearby for 7.5 months. 

They left notes.

Lots of people slowed down, stopped, or raced by. Someone even called the cops, who were nice enough after they had finished accusing us (understandably) of graffitti-ing this building whose wall we were borrowing. My favorite line was when one cop went off to return the phonecall to the concerned citizen that had called us in for supposedly tagging the wall. "Yes... as it turns out, they're just taping seeds to the wall. Yes. wildflower seeds."

We offered to let him take a packet, but he wasn't interested in taking anything but Ash Mae's personal details. Too bad for him.


ashmae said...

yay charla! i love this! i'm so glad we experienced all the joy and cold and tape-ripping together! (well, i guess you did that on your own, but i was by your side!) much love.

Heather said...

I love my cousin! I like you too for helping her!

shelly said...

This is so awesome! I wish I were there to see it in person....but since I'm not, thanks for keeping us updated!

Caitlin said...

what a beautiful idea. I love the cop picture... Ash Mae has the "yes-officer-is-this-illegal" face going on.

Amalia said...

this was right by my house, and i loved it.