Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Public Works or Public Art?

Seen last week on a sidewalk near Civic Center in San Francisco:

It's strangely captivating, the short pieces of blue tape on the boarder of the plywood playing against the long strips of red tape around the chairs. The union of these two discreet chairs mirroring the union of the two pieces of wood below. Indeed one of the most intriguing things about this plywood/chair/tape piece is that it effectively distracts passer-bys from the expensive and ornate display in the store window behind. Is this a comment on the power of context in our consumer society? The assemblage of junk on the sidewalk, a strange and unusual occurrence that is free to appreciate, upstages the traditional consumer display of expensive nick-knacks.

The only clue as to the true intentions of this "piece" is the tag on one of the folding chairs:

Pardon the blurriness, it was a low-light situation. The sticker says, "Keep Upright. Do not topple." The rest is illegible from the picture, I don't recall the sticker mentioning either the origin or the purpose of this piece of public works and/or art installation.

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