Tag Archives | public

PARTICIPANT INTERVIEW: Daniel Bejar

What are you working on now and how does the piece in Conflux relate?

Right now I’m working on a few projects, but the immediate one is “Rec-elections” which are site-specific performances, which question Conservative Presidential advertising strategies, which weaponize nostalgia as a political tool of manipulation. In Conservative advertising you find a lot of references to the past, always with an eye looking back. I recently returned from the Republican National Convention in Tampa, FL where I appropriated their strategy by using historical campaign posters from past elections, such as from Romney’s father campaign when he ran in 1968. I performed in protest marches and rallies by utilizing the historical campaign posters and handing them out to fellow protesters. “Rec-elections” is similar to my project “Get Lost!” which will be part of Conflux in that they both utilize history as tool to question the present, and both open up a space to envision alternate possibilities.

What interests you in working in public space? What are some of the challenges you face making public work?

My interest in public space is that first and foremost it is “public”, something we all share, and have the ability to contribute to. Public space is more, and more becoming a contested site, and as a site of contention I find it something to question and push back against. And finally public space is a place we all have access to regardless of wealth, social status, race, religion, sex, etc. there are no social barriers which exclude an audience, I find this very appealing in making socially conscious work. As for challenges, I think the biggest challenge of working in public space is the variable of not knowing what can happen in public, you really can’t plan every aspect of a project in public space. I’ve come to embrace this variable of chance, and found that amazing things can happen that weren’t even thought of.

Any great adventures you’ve been on recently?

I was recently at the Republican National Convention in Tampa, FL. It wan an intense week spent in a legalized police state. Protests and marches were allowed, but only during sanctioned times, and places, all of which were blocks away from the actual convention where the actual target audience was. It was a marginalizing experience. Not sure if it was great, but it was definitely an adventure.

Check out more here: www.danielbejar.com @dabejar

 

PARTICIPANT INTERVIEW: Nate Hill

What are you working on now and how does the piece in Conflux relate?

Free Bouncy Rides started in 2009 as an independent, public performance. In retrospect, it used spectacle and repetition to achieve notoriety through word of mouth and blog coverage. Most of my performance work that followed did the same. Now in 2012 it was time for a change. Wolfie, my current project, rejected spectacle even though it is also a masked, outlandish character. It did this by denying my audience any pictures or videos of the project whatsoever and denying traditional press/blog “ride-a-long” coverage which before had been the traditional dispersion of my work. I’ve only provided an eye witness written account. Why? Because I’m interested in how my audience can fill in the blanks with their imagination rather than being spoon-fed a brightly colored image. Will they follow? Will they imagine? Is the project still compelling? Will the blogs who loved my spectacles in the past, love my non-spectacle? So far, the answer is no. After over a month of Wolfie, I have concluded that without spectacle, Wolfie gets no press even though it is the same type of project I have always done just without a picture or video! Even a close artist friend last night, when asked how he would have done Wolfie differently, described a character who is all spectacle.

Check out more here: http://natehillisnuts.com, @nateXhill