Picket Fence

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2006, public performance

Friday September 8. Ashland Avenue between 47th and 48th streets, Chicago.

This piece was part of Park Yourself, a collection of artists performing or creating art in metered parking spots throughout the city.

In the parking space, the artist surrounded himself with a fence the size of a Toyota Camry.

After completing the fence, he paused to rest and inhabit the space.

Then a handsaw was produced. The fence was cut to pieces and the parking space was cleared.

This performance addresses issues of ownership and the isolation and yearning it can create. The physical challenge of the execution - the sweat and labor - are significant elements of the piece.

Artist Notes:

The piece was a big success. The building phase went smoothly and passers by were very engaged by the process. Lots of questions were asked. As I began to cut the fence down the police came and threatened to write a citation for building without a permit. After some consultation and deliberation came their decision: sorry, you'll have to take it down. The performance continued as planned.

Thanks to Jenny Roberts for organizing the project. Thanks to Brent Wachter for taking awesome pictures.