Friday, November 18, 2011

Fun Art Project

The assignment was appropriation. I appropriated Gary Larson's Far Side Cartoon.

The idea was to entirely transform this space in the stairwell in the art building. I wanted the class to be able to walk into a Far Side Cartoon and be able to interact with the elements. Everything is cut out of paper as a link to the original cartoon which had been cut out and magneted to the fridge in my childhood home. You can't tell really from a photo but as the sun went down it hit the paint in the window and blasted this yellow orange color throughout the several floors. It was unintentionally fantastic and added whole additional level to the installation. I really wanted to get a photo of the sunset and someone talking on the phone just like in the cartoon, but the Art Department's administration had a mini panic attack:

Someone did an Art 8 project, painting the windows and putting up some stuff on the walls, etc. Which of your students did this?
Thanks. It has to come down, and windows must be cleaned.
Robert Lewis
Office Coordinator
Department of Art Practice
UC Berkeley
p: 510.642.2582
f: 510.643.0884

I am certain that window's never been so clean in it's existence than it is now. And I thought I'd let someone else toss or "appropriate" the rest of it:

The following class day, our instructor called in, so the department head substituted. The man's already intimidating since he's the instructor's boss, but he marches in and immediately asks, "Who painted the window?" Ha! Every student in the class knew it was me but they all looked just as guilty as I was. Finally, one big eyed, timid freshman pointed to me...
"There's no painted window that I know of." Deniability. Yep. Will he buy it?
"Everyone's in a.." he flourishes his hands around. .."about someone painting the windows."
"There's no window painted." Deniability = confusion. Technically, I wasn't lying because the night before I had been in that damn stairwell with a bucket of suds, a dustpan and a spatula scraping that cheap-crap-6-year-old-Walmart-paint off the now sparkling window.
"What about the other stuff? Is that where the pink phone is?" Still confused, but coming around.
"Yes, sir. It can be thrown away, but everything is detached from the infrastructure like the email said to.
"Well, okay then." Win.

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