Insert_Here 2

Insert ____ Here 2011 was a re-imagining of the project I created in 2008. This time I collaborated with 350.org to make it huge! And global. We wanted to put the power of creative thinking in the hands of community organizations and give people a chance to think positively in the face of climate change. View all the sites at insert-here.org.

 

And we partnered with artist Paul Notzold for an interactive projection project.

 

image

If there was a way to connect with other artists working on environmental issues in a non-traditional way, would that be useful to you?

I had a great meeting with Theresa von Wuthenau, founder of Imagine2020, an arts organization which is an umbrella for 11 presenters around Europe who are presenting work on climate change issues. It made me think about the value of shared resources, experience and networks and how that might increase visibility and ability for artists around the world.

So if there was a way to connect, what would it look like and what would the goals be? Is it a simple FaceBook group or a forum? Is it something deeper which allows knowledge and resource sharing through tagging and data mining. How deep is it? How shallow? How much time would one have to put into it to get something out of it? How much time do any of us have to give to it?

Could the group start to make things happen in the way of venues, funding and other oppurtunities? Is it curated, inclusionary? How does the group define or self define?

One of the other projects that Imagine2020 is working on is a summer school for artists and scientists to get together to collaborate. They are seeking to have the artists and scientists truly collaborating, not just the artist collecting information and creating a project independently. I would love to find some ways to recreate these opportunities

Okay, so you probably know that I have been working on the Seeding the City project for over two years now. And this past September the project launched! YAY! It was a long time in the planning stages.

green roof modules at covenant house

So the point of the project was to find a handful of people who were interested in installing small green roof modules (little trays of green roof that were less than 2’x4′). These people were then to reach out to their friends/neighbors to interest them in putting modules on their roofs too. The goals were to create a network of people in a region who were all interested in urban environmental issues and spark a wave of green roof building – more on all that here.

So it started slowly with a few people interested – I kind of thought there would be loads of people who wanted a free green roof! Then I started to get interest from institutions, and although this wasn’t the intended audience, it seemed like a good idea anyway. So when we went to install the first modules the comments were along the lines of “that’s it?” “that’s so easy!” — and I realized (after my great experience with the planting program with Covenant House) that there was some other potential here. So I brought up the idea of doing a planting program with the residents of this particular institution. If they cover the costs (at just over $1,000) we could do run a half day workshop and by the end of that they would have a larger green roof – about 2,000 square feet worth!

Seeding the City flag

I have since planted at a pre-school, an environmental organization and another school, all of whom are interested in doing planting workshops in the spring! So that is 4 more green roofs than NYC had before I started the project.

So, while I may not (yet) be getting the broad reach that I had hoped for, I am getting to install some larger scale green roofs with some great people. And the green roof education reaches a broad base of people who will one day build their own networks…

modules & flag

It may be a hoax, but the New York Times paper and website being distributed and posted today has some shockingly simple and beautiful ideas.

With tongue planted firmly in cheek, the paper has this to say, on George Bush’s indictment for treason:

“The death and economic collapse that resulted has been completely devastating to our nation and, most of all, to me,” read Mr. Bush’s indictment. “I want to make amends, and it is for this reason that I am requesting that I be indicted for high treason. I thank the court for allowing me to right my grave wrongs. Bring it on!”

NYTimes-se front page

On holding nationalizing oil to fund climate change projects:

“The private oil interests have been involved in theft for decades,” responded Deputy Under Secretary of the E.P.A. Gavin Newsom. “They’ve stolen our air, our oceans, our health, and our land. They’ve proven they can’t run their business without massive theft.”

“If we’re going to give corporations the same rights as people,” said House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, “then we need to hold them accountable like people. When parents abuse their children, the government takes over. When oil companies abuse the planet, the government needs to take over too.”

And on NYC’s greatly expanded bike lanes:

Over the next two years, every other avenue will also receive a full bike lane, blocked off from traffic, while every fifth crosstown street will be opened exclusively to bicyclists and pedestrians beginning next month.

Mark Blair, a transit worker from Queens, was busy re-timing traffic lights for bicycle speed. “Riding your bike up or down the avenue, the traffic lights are going to change in sync,” explained Blair. “You ride 10-15 miles per hour, and you’ll be hitting all greens.”

“Now that our country is taking its rightful place among the world’s developed nations,” said Mayor Bloomberg, “it is time for our greatest city to take its place among the world’s great cities.”

You should go read it all yourself. The ads are pretty funny too.

And while it is all done in good humour, there is not just a small amount of poignancy and hope. The paper is written from the point of view of our country (the people, institutions, government and corporations) actually having a conscious.

It’s about approaching the world from a people first (not convenience or money – which is what rules it now) and long term thinking. Actually leaving the world a *better* place for the next generation.

In the print version there is an HSBC add (you know the ones where they use three images with three different points of view written over them) of Barack Obama pictured three times with the words: “epoch-making” “pivotal” “squandered.”

So bring on the massive transportation infrastructure rebuild, the closing of guantanamo, and the maximum wage law.

It would be refreshing.

There are a lot of words that we use to talk about some bad environmental & ecological situations that seem to sugar coat the issues. I am compiling a list. Here’s the first:

Climate Change - That’s kind of like calling Hurricanes Katrina and Ike, “alterations in the weather pattern.” What we are facing, is in reality, climate catastrophy. We are talking about massive, drastic, significant and irreversible weather patterns that will alter ecosystems on both the micro and macro scale. It is an alteration of life as we know it – happening on a meteoric time scale.

That’s daily post #1.

crossposted from seedingthecity.org

I like to approach projects from an “outside the box” (boy, thats an overused term) point of view. When I mentioned the “Seeding the City” to a friend who works with green roofs, he questioned the value of planting such a small plot of greenery – how is that going to have any real affect on the Urban Heat Island Effect?

May answer, “Each individual module may have a negligible affect, but what would hundreds of modules spread across the city do to both our environment, our awareness and our social fabric?”

When you consider the potential of the project, creating potentially enough greenery on rooftops to recreate a Central Park in the sky? Now it gets interesting.

I have also been considering how to raise money for the project outside of the “normal” channels (i.e. grants). A couple of things have come up recently which I am investigating:

  • ThePoint.com is a tipping point model for fundraising and social action. Get enough people to commit to something, and then it can happen. I posted the project on there with enough funds to launch the project, its a pretty high price, so we will see how close I get, but it does allow many people to be involved at a small level – it is a further exploration of microfinancing.
  • Another idea is to exchange money for experience or special commodities from the project, this is based on the model of artistshare.com. The funding is given up front and then the funders are invited to participate in interesting ways throughout the project.
  • Finally, my own thought of allowing people to “sponsor” grm’s throughout the city. Pay $50 and you would sponsor a grm in your choice of one of the neighborhoods. This wouldn’t be on your own roof, but would include your sponsorship information on the signage and website.

So, does anyone have any thoughts on any of this? Are there ways you would want to participate financially? Would you give a small amount for nothing in return or prefer a larger amount and a unique experience or commodity (if so what would that experience or commodity be?) or would you prefer to know that your funds are directed at a specific piece of action?

Another blog I read just turned me on to RAF-Reduce Art Flights, a project launched at the Venice Biennial. The project aimed to highlight and promote the reduction of travel in the art world. With all the art fairs there’s been an increase in not just in travel, but an exponential increase in shipping of artwork.

This project hits close to home, especially given a couple of recent experiences. As I would hope, as my career grows, I have more opportunities to travel with/because of my work. On the other hand, I don’t want to create a negative environmental impact with the work. And airline flights (if you didn’t already know) have HUGE carbon emissions. So how to keep the career growing, spread the work and minimize the impact?

Recently I was invited to the Wexner Center to present my work as part of the Art & Environment program. It was a one afternoon engagement. I explained the quandary to the director, and asked if there was a way to broaden my (positive) impact while there, could she work with the school or other organizations to fill up a week? She was happy to oblige. I spent a week working with a local group of extraordinary high school students (more on that later), spent the afternoon at the Wexner, and met with local artists. Believe me the week was packed full.

(I was also reminded – again – of our desperate need for better rail. The only train was a 12 hour trip arriving at 3.30am in a city two hours away, the bus left at 4am. I was totally up for taking on the long trip and early arrival, but as anyone who has ridden any distance knows, the freight trains are given priority and passenger trains are notoriously late. If I missed the 4am bus I would have been awkwardly stranded).

So in the case of Wexner it opened up lots more opportunities for me to meet with and work with people.

The other instance was that I was invited to participate in the EcoAesthetics exhibition at < > TAG platform in The Hague. They were interested in bringing in an artists who would get out into the public space and create interventions or activate public participation. Well, thats me for sure! Unfortunately I *really* couldn’t justify a flight to The Hague for a weekend project*. So instead I suggested that I create a project that could occur in the public realm, but which they could produce, organize and promote all themselves. I would provide the creative idea, the structure and the electronic files, everything else was (mostly) up to them. From that was born the “Insert ____ Here” project which will launch in The Hague this weekend, Brooklyn next weekend and then Miami and the Bronx soon after. I would love to see it happen in neighborhoods around the world, so certainly contact me, or watch the project site (totally in progress- just a theme place holder for the moment) for more information.Link

In light of this, I have been talking with Michael Mandiberg and Tiffany Holmes (of ecoviz.org) about creating a group of artists who are interested in participating in and promoting an electronic panel. We could be in our homes, in front of a web cam participating in a panel anywhere in the world. If Andy Revkin can do it, so can we.

*It’s not that I don’t want to go to these places – I definitely do, I love travel and I love meeting people around the world, but I am trying to be conscientious about my travel footprint – reducing the flights and if I do fly, packing the time full of opportunities.

Images (from top to bottom): Michael Mandiberg’s Real Cost plugin for Mozilla Firefox, Eve S. Mosher’s “Insert ____ Here” project

(cross-posted from my new project site, seedingthecity.org):

Help me chose a summary statement

So I have written a couple of different summary statements. Which do you like better?

“Seeding the City” is a public art project that seeks to plant “seeds” of thought in the urban environment on challenges of climate change and potential for remediation. Social networking will determine the location for installation of individual green roof sample sites. Included with the installation will be educational and community building tools, and methods to trace the growth of the network. Online resources will include mapping of the project, tools for tracking local urban heat island effect and resources to recreate the project worldwide.

“Seeding the City” is an art project that utilizes social networking to site urban interventions in the form of green roof modules. It capitalizes on community building to introduce urban environmental issues and remediation tools. The modules and their accompanying flags and street level signage will track the growth of the network throughout the neighborhood. Online resources will include mapping of the project, tools for tracking local urban heat island effect and resources to recreate the project worldwide.

Let me know in the comments!

One thing I have to remind myself is that “public art” has inherently, the word “public” in it.

This has been really driven home during the installation of the beacons during the HighWaterLine project. I have placed the beacons in 5 city parks (sorry that I never got to redo Canarsie) spanning the coast of Brooklyn and Lower Manhattan. Most of the installations were fairly peaceful and a nice opportunity to talk to people about New York City and climate change.

Every one of the installations involved at least one act of “public interaction.” At the very first installation in Corlear’s Hook Park, a gentleman was looking at the beacon, then knelt down, pulled the beacon out of the ground (it is staked on 4 corners) and removed the flashlight in the base. I was standing about 60 feet away and called out, “would you mind putting that back?” he did so, and quietly tried to restake the beacon, all without saying a word.

When I installed in Battery Park a few people would walk up, and without even pausing to look closely at the beacon, grabbed it and roughly shook it back and forth. Much like you would a snowglobe. I have had a lot of opportunity to ponder this, and cannot for the life of me understand what is the point of this activity. To me it is the equivalent of walking up to a friend, seeing that they are wearing an interesting shirt and then grabbing it and pulling them roughly about as if to see if the shirt is going to fall apart in my hands.

This activity, let’s call it snowglobing (sounds vaguely rude), has happened at least once in every installation of the beacons, but the real test was the weekend long installation that just occurred as part of the Dumbo Art Center‘s Art Under the Bridge Festival. This massive art festival consists of installations, performances and projections and general insanity around Dumbo. There are probably around 20-30,000 people who pass through the area over the weekend. I installed the beacons on Friday afternoon and took them out on Sunday evening. Over the weekend the beacons were more than snowglobed, they were knocked down, moved, emptied, turned over, altered and pieces stolen. I don’t even want to consider what might have happened that moved one beacon (and the wet, 20 pound bags of sand) about 10 feet from its original location.

Every time I visited they were in disarray. I was sometimes shocked, but mostly amused with a hint of annoyance. I calmly went about resurrecting them, often with the assistance of some kind onlookers. I should make a point that most people are very respectful of the work and treat it carefully, enjoying it in a non-threatening way and ensuring the work is left in tact for other to also enjoy. This was not the case however when a friend and fellow public artist went to visit the work in Brooklyn Bridge Park during the festival. She was so sickened by the obnoxious treatment (including a parent who watched their child knock it about, eventually toppling it) that she had to leave immediately.

So, not to disparage what is obviously a strong and fairly common urge, but if there is anyone out there who has participated in a snowglobing type of activity, we on the art making side of the fence would love to know more about why this is done…

Last week was kind of a nutty week. I was part of a group show opening at Nelson Hancock Gallery in Dumbo, Topos : Brooklyn, showing images of the HighWaterLine project. All very great there were some really interesting projects/images there, including works by Tim Connor, Rebekah Farley, Michael Iacovoni, Michael Itkoff, Michael Piazza, Michael Simon, and Torrance York. Here’s where th crazy comes in, for some reason I had in my head that the opening was this week. So when I talked to Nelson and found out otherwise, Ed & I switched into overdrive to get things figured out. We met Nelson on Saturday morning to see the space and work out what we were going to show. We came up with the idea of doing a 3 1/2″ x 170″ scroll of many images (37) from the project. I also wanted to put up maps of the upcoming weekends – there were three weekends still to happen after the opening – and then replace the maps with images after the weekend’s drawings. Nelson loved both ideas, so we were sent off on our way to get it done and back to them by Wednesday morning for installation.

Saturday afternoon I had made plans with my friends Peter & Cecile to go see the Mike Nelson “A Psychic Vacuum” at the Essex Market (courtesy of Creative Time). It was a good break to take – the installation is fantastic, and really does play with your psyche – time, space emotions are all in there. And I really loved the last space. I won’t spoil it, just go see it. It is open until October 28th.
So Saturday evening/Sunday morning I had to sort through all of the photos and pick out about 40 that I wanted to use. Then I met at 10am on Sunday (yeh, I have no weekends anymore) with Ed to pick out the final images and get them in order. I also was making cd’s of a bunch of images that I hadn’t yet gotten from Ed. Around 1pm I ran home to eat some lunch (and see g-pup, pup-pup and puppykat). Then back over to the studio to meet with our color corrector/printer, Taylor. He and I worked out the schedule to get things back to the gallery on time. The cd’s I was trying to copy at the studio were also taking ages to copy. So I left them copying to come home for dinner, then went back to finish copying them. Around 9ish I came back home and sorted through the images and pulled them into photoshop to put them in strips to pass off to Taylor by Monday 9am. So I stayed up until about 1:30am getting it all in order (with the help of g-pup). Woke up the next morning nice and early to walk pup-pup to get myself into the city by 9am to pass off the disc to Taylor before heading off to the day job.

Taylor worked some serious magic on color correcting the images and was ready to review them Monday evening. So I was over in the studio again with Ed & Taylor getting the images in order and ready for the final print. We were supposed to finish the printing that night, but ran out of paper at about midnight! Tuesday Ed got more paper and was going to print the scroll on his printer that evening. Around 7ish he realized his printer wouldn’t print something as long at 170″ (some epson thing), Taylor was at the photo studio where he could print something that long, but didn’t have the files. I ran over to the studio, burned a disc, jumped on a train and headed into the city to hand off to Taylor at about 10pm. Taylor stayed up late (again) getting two prints off for me. I came back into the studio Wednesday morning at 9am and picked up the prints (thanks to Gerard for his help too) and delivered them to the gallery. Whew.

Then Thursday I walked over 14 miles to do the chalking out on the shore parkway. Then took a shower and ran over to the opening. Friday I was up early to do the chalking in Sunset Park Industrial area, then back to the studio, where I was on the phone with the Parks Dept to get the permit in order for Sunday (they had lost the application, but thanks to Eddie & Nancy in Special Events, they got it worked out for me). I ran up to Litchfield Villa, then back home again for a shower and heading into the city for Cynthia’s opening and the preview of the Canary Project images.

Again on Saturday an early morning out chalking in Gowanus – it was a gorgeous day for it after the rain moved off. Then jumping on my bike for a windy ride over to the Conflux Festival for the Eyebeam Eco-Visualization Challenge Panel. Where I had the joy of sitting on a panel with some pretty smart, clever and creative people: Amanda McDonald Crowley, Tiffany Holmes, Michael Mandiberg and Brooke Singer. From there I jumped back on my bike to head into Union Square to help my friend Steve with his project, Ronald’s Crisis. Back home (great day for a bike ride over the Williamsburg Bridge) to upload images and blog about the weekend.

Sunday another early start out finishing the chalking in Gowanus, joined by my friend Margo, who biked from Washington Heights to South Brooklyn (I love you!). We chalked and then had a fab lunch at the Red Hook soccer fields. Peter and Hose came out to help and document respectively, the installation at the soccer fields. With the help of the kids in the area, I installed the beacons. Which, you should know, consists of carrying the pieces (base, beacons, spikes, flashlight) to the site, laying them out, putting them together, hammering the spikes into the ground, then filling each with 1/3 gallon of water, and cap them all. It’s not at all a short task and can be physical. We spent about 2 1/2 hours installing them all (and having 3 broken in the process – no big deal I had 50% overage made, thanks to a suggestion years ago from a prepator who worked with Chihuly who regularly brings 15-25% overage for breakage during installation). After photographing them, I found out the people I thought were coming out that afternoon to help out, weren’t going to make it. So I was stuck. I had more chalking to do and it was going to be about 3-4 hours to dark. In Battery Park I was okay to leave the beacons installed while I chalked, but Red Hook was a much more active area and leaving them unattended wasn’t going to be a good idea. So, I de-installed them (I know, crazy). Then Hose and Peter left and I did a few more blocks of chalking in Red Hook. Then I went back to the studio to unload, then back to the house to unload the beacons (they live in the apt right now) and pick up g-pup who was going to help me re-install a handful of beacons for the night time portion of the project. So I went back out, re-installed and photographed again. Luckily there was a group of girls who were there during the day that were still there. They got to see the installation at night, and really loved it – having them huddled around the beacon totally made it worthwhile to have come back out to reinstall.Sunday night and Monday were spent uploading images and updating the blogs and websites. Monday afternoon I met Cecile again to try to go catch Stephanie Skaff‘s street performance, Make Me One With Everything. The performance on Monday had been canceled, so we couldn’t find her. (I am going to try to catch it again this morning on my way into the city – after dropping off packets at Nelson Hancock and visiting BBPark to site the beacons).

So this is a REALLY long story to explain one thing – when the crazy is about something you love, then you even love the crazy. I was writing an email to someone this morning outlining the upcoming weekend’s work and realized that there will be a couple more crazy days coming up. I paused to think about it and it got me a little excited (despite still being tired from the recent crazy). I really really love creating the projects, I love doing my art, even the crazy. If you don’t love what you are doing – then why are you doing it? Do the things that make you crazy but only if you are in love with that crazy. I am in love with my crazy. (Can’t wait to spend some time in studio though too!)


Some smart person was sitting looking at the water, watching the undulations and reflections and was smart enough to realize that if they harnessed that energy…

I’m not that smart person, but I am glad they are out there. Instead, I tend to lend my brain to creative pursuits. Albeit hopefully creative pursuits that have a goal, or actionable outcome. So lately, as the High Water Line project continues along (just finished Lower Manhattan – so its back to Brooklyn!), I have been contemplating a couple of things.

First, what to do next. I have a lot of ideas I am playing with, which I will outline below.

And second, how to capitalize on all the media attention around the High Water Line. An artist whom I admire, Chris Doyle, speaks of his first big public art project, Commutable, and he was asked, “Are you ready?” by one of his presenting organizations. When he asked what they meant, they said “Are you ready for all of the attention you will get around this, and will you be able to use that to continue to build your career?”

So I was very conscious of that going into this project, particularly as the attention continued to grow. And I have to ask myself? Am I ready? I thought I was. I have concepts for the next project, I am definitely making use of the fantastic network of people that I have met over the course of the project. But how, realistically does one turn that attention into funding or other types of support for the next project? I’m not sure that I know. So now what?

Well, what I am doing now is working on the next thing… hopefully I can take it a little slower and ensure more up front funding and get all of the ducks in a row earlier in the process. So here is the roster of projects (all with *working* titles and there fore subject to change).

Green Seeds
Background: This project builds off the history of gardening in NYC as well as the connections to food which are long established in the Lower East Side and Chinatown. It also examines the heat island effect, and the mitigation which even a small portion of something like a green roof can play on the temperature of the city. Finally it utilizes social networking to generate siting the project.
Green roof: I have been gathering information on green roofing and have found a modular and lightweight system which can be used without a lot of retrofitting or heavy construction etc. My idea is to take one or two of the modular pillows and place them on roofs. They then act as a *seed* of a green roof. They might (I’m working on this) housed in a sculptural element (the seed pod?) that could also contain instruments for measuring temperature (which could be sent back to an online map), a solar panel to power the instrumentation, provide some weight and protection for the green roof and perhaps provide some visual cues about the green roof.

Social networking: The social networking is accomplished as follows. 1. I find the first person on whose roof I place the first green seed pod. I then get the necessary approval from the landlord, and ask the resident to meet or find one or two people in a neighboring building that are also interested in having the project installed. Again I go through the necessary approvals and install the second green seed pod, asking those residents to again find the next set of interested participants. I would also like to install them in some more public spaces like schools and public rooftop areas. From these locations people could inquire and request green seed pods.

How to make it public: Here’s one of the tricky parts. How to make the project *more* public. Since the roofs might be a majority privately owned, access isn’t really a possibility. The mapping and temperature taking will be publicly accessible, but how else can I do it? Do I literally run string from one green seed pod to the next, showing the network as it grows? (But what does that really have to do with green roofs?) Do I create little plaques (like historical markers) that can be affixed to the front of the buildings? Do I recreate George Bliss‘ Purple Footprints (once used to lead to Adam Purple‘s community garden, and then later to protest the Bowery Bar) – but that’s illegal…

Okay, I was supposed to write them all up, but now I am going to be late for work, so I will add the rest (Coffee Cup Reduction Project, Real Cost Cafe and What a Waste – Disposable Culture) later…


I have been thinking about noting the numbers involved in the High Water Line project, and after shifting 3,000 pounds of chalk – yep, you heard that right, 3,000 – now is as good a time as any!

I have had sort of a critical mass of community board meetings and parks meetings happening as the project and the summer holidays (for the community boards) rapidly approaches. So here are some of the numbers so far:

3,000 pounds of chalk moved from the truck into storage
208 ounces of pigment
444 paths drawn on my community walk map
13 community boards
8 community board meetings (so far)
9 parks department representatives
4 DOT representatives
2 NASA scientists
8 grant applications (so far)
50 miles of biking (approximately) the line
10 miles of walking the line
2,000 action packets
2 websites (new one coming soon!)
1 press mention (so far)

And we won’t even go into budget and expenses yet…

It seems that a lot of what public art making requires is just plain old persistence. I have learned on this project what it really means to sell your idea and how not to take no for an answer. Don’t get me wrong, there have been several times along the way where I have just thought – ugh! why am I even doing this? Then I pick myself up, dust myself off and plow on ahead. I do know that it is going to continue to be a hard process, but it is something that I am really passionate about, and when I do find people who are really excited about the project (the audience at Community Boards) or just plain super helpful – many of the people in city agencies – it can be a great boon to the spirit and buoy me back up again.

Speaking of people excited about the project, I am looking for volunteers to work on the project – so if you love talking to people about climate issues, and want to go for long interesting and meandering walks around NYC – contact me!

There are a couple of more hurdles to clear – the biggest of which is finding space to mix the chalk and pigment. If anyone has some outdoor space, studio space or storage space that they aren’t using, don’t care if it gets dusty and has access to power – definitely let me know! Special bonus if it has a loading dock. That would certainly be easier than shifting 3,000 pounds of chalk each month.

Top photo of natural pigments, courtesy of The Real Milk Paint Company.


My hope at the beginning of the HighWaterLine project was to take you, my blog reader friends, along for the ride (at least partially). It has turned out that a lot of the work is about emailing, meetings and writing and re-writing proposals and promotions. It turns out that all that stuff isn’t so interesting to blog about.

One thing I would like to do though, is to offer the knowledge that I have gained to others out there interested in doing public art projects. Here’s where you come in…

First, if you have questions about the process, post away. I am happy to answer any questions people might have about the process – grantwriting, fiscal sponsorship, grant reporting, networking, working with partners, working with city agencies, community boards, fabrication, public outreach, press and marketing, etc. I will provide in-depth answers in whatever you are interested in learning more about.

Second, if you are interested in the process and want to witness some *live action* I have a LOT of community board meetings coming up, let me know if you are interested in learning more about the process, you can join me at one of the meetings. Just go to the highwaterline.org site and contact me.

Finally, if you really really want to get out there and see what it is all about, volunteer! I am looking for artists and environmentally minded folks to walk the line with me. There are a couple of ways to help, so go check out the timeline, and then contact me to let me know when you would like to help out!

(Top image – the glamour of making public art…)

It has been interesting to work on a project within the specific realm of arts and environmental issues. Is it a subculture or a genre? There are both a lot of people working on these issues and at the same time relatively few.
As I talk to more people about High Water Line, I find more crossover and you start to hear the same names over and over again. I was meeting with a friend at Eyebeam the day after my friends at Solar One were there, then my partners at Canary Project were meeting with Solar One the same afternoon that I was attending the Sea of People fundraiser. An advisor of mine had suggested that I look up Jane Marsching just a couple of days after another friend had put us in touch. Jennifer Monson of iLand and I keep crossing paths, and my designers at Pratt Design Corps are friends with CP’s assistant… The list goes on.I had heard the name Alexis Rockman mentioned by the Precipice Alliance, and then again by Cynthia Rosenzweig. Most recently a friend of mine brought up his name after having met with LMCC about her own independent projects. Finally I took a few minutes (in between drawing maps and writing grant applications), to look more in depth at his work. A google image search brings up a huge list of fantastical images. I found some good articles on his work in the NYTimes, Wired and Orion Magazine. He paints this rich and luscious paintings of romanticized demise of the earth from the efforts of man (genetic alteration, global warming, etc). These paintings are layered with imagery of great and small creatures (rarely are humans in the picture – although on occasion). I love the bright colors and the detail and lighting which are imbued in the work. It is an interestingly fantastical image of human degradation of the earth and what comes after. I can’t help thinking about how fun it would be to work with him on a 2-d 3-d version of Courses of Empire (the Acadia to Utopia series) that I have wanted to do for a long time. Don’t be surprised if in between the next few public projects that I want to do, I squeeze in some time to do a sculptural interpretation of one of his works.
Top image: Dancer in iLand performance
Middle image: Jane Marsching’s Arctic Listening Post
Last three images: Alexis Rockman