In your wildest bohemian dream, could you imagine yourself scavenging the streets of New York City for bits of lumber and cast-off car motors to turn into works of art, a fleet of seafaring vessels, and the setting for a month of moveable feasts? Continuing the fantasy, you’d travel the Adriatic Sea along Slovenia, picking up additional scavenged items to display on your fantastical craft. Manned with 30 free spirits, including members of a band called Dark, Dark, Dark, your final goal is to then alight in Venice to perform with “music, shadow puppetry and story.” Thus was the vision-turned-reality commencing in May 2009. It was a voyage made as “a love poem to cities built in the middle of the ocean.”
The voyage was headed by Swoon, a visual performance artist. Swoon’s imagination - and her art - is a twisty hybrid of the Florida swamps of her youth and the majestic cityscapes of her current city life. The rafts stretched into building-like spires of manmade debris, made truly organic by the continual addition of flotsam and jetsam throughout the journey. The fantastical crafts were dismantled by the crafters after their much-awaited debut in Italy. Though many believed this venture was a nod to the green movement, the collaborators, though generally environmentally conscious, say it is “neither sustainable, nor an energy-efficient operation.”
All in all, the project sounds like it was one heck of a trip. Ahem. Maybe I’ll ask SWOON for travel advice starting with my bin of empty Poland Springs bottles. Gotta be a motor around here somewhere.
Photo Credit: Tod Seelie
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