Thursday, April 29, 2010

Post wrap up

10% Pending started Post late last year when we called for artists to be part of an experimental art project, where artworks on small postcard-sized pieces of wood, were sent out to random addresses in Hobart City Council.  We didn’t retain the addresses for privacy reasons; however, we requested that the recipients of these parcels bring them to the Hobart Fringe Festival’s Night Market on the 14th of November.  You can see the original call-out here.

Unfortunately, on the night only one person actually brought an artwork back.  We weren’t expecting them all back, but perhaps at least more than one.  One man who visited our set-up that night admitted that he’d received an artwork in the mail but had forgotten to bring it.  I suggested maybe he could go home and bring it back, but he wasn’t convinced (boooo…). 

The works, or at least images of the works, were still on display at the night market regardless.  We had a shadow board of sorts, where colour images of the works were to be replaced with the actual works as they came in.  That way, the generous artists who participated in the project still had their artworks showcased.

We didn’t see the project as a failure simply because it didn’t work as planned.  Admittedly, it was a lot to ask from people.  After all, would you give up an artwork that was personally addressed to you and came wrapped in a cute brown paper package?!

The project continued on the streets.  We drew up ‘Lost’ posters, with a full colour image of each work, artist details and information on the project, and how people can return the artwork or simply tell us a story about the artwork if they’d seen it.  We had switched from wanting the works back to more of an emphasis on tracking the artworks’ journeys, incorporating their lost status into the project itself.  Posters were hung around Hobart, in shop windows, pubs, on street poles, cafes and the Laundromat.  They were also granted a prime position in the window of Fullers Bookshop, where they’ve enjoyed a lot of attention and generated a number of enquiries.  In all, by displaying the works in this form around Hobart, they no doubt were seen and appreciated by a far greater audience than had they been locked in a gallery space. 

This notion of getting art out of the gallery and into public spaces is key to the 10% Pending philosophy.  The Post project didn’t go as planned, yet by letting the project take its own path, I’d say it was probably more successful than the project as originally imagined. 

We’d like to thank all the artists who took part in the Post project: Nicola Smith, Henry Hawthorne, Samara McIlroy, Iona Johnson, Ingrid Berger, Selena de Carvalho, Peter Angus Robinson, Alison McCrindle, Anni Jensen, Holly Radunz, Cath Robinson, Andrew Harper, Pip Stafford, Ben Ryan, Sarah Jones, Lucy Hawthorne, Jack Robins, Alice O’Brien.