This was the test run of a new project to place hand-painted tiles in public spaces with a positive message on the back. At the next paint party, Baji Lives! collaborators will be albe to paint their own tiles and write messages on the back. Should be fun - let us know if you find one!
After two paint-parties, we've got a good stock of chillers ready to add color to the streets. I'm starting locally (Bushwick), but will try to spread the love all over NYC eventually.
So the plan with these little guys is to neatly place them in subway platforms, bus stops and other public places for people to enjoy, examine and maybe even take home with them. These tiles come from the concrete shop that I work at and were going to be thrown away. Instead of going to the dump, they've taken on a new life.
Preparing a batch of "little chiller" magnets so that a class of 100 kindergarteners in New Orleans can paint them. Thank you to Jimmy Singer, who is currently teaching Kindergarten through Teach for America, for facilitating this collaboration.
A few weeks ago I placed two Baji Lives ovals neatly at the edge of the main entrance staircase at MOMA and sort of assumed that they would be thrown away by the maintenance people. I also couldn't resist placing a blue one on this bright red counter in the design section.
Last night a musician friend told me that he had interviewed for a position as a ticket taker at MOMA, and saw a brightly colored oval taped to the wall in the office of his potential boss. The director of operations said that he had no idea where it came from or what it meant, but that he liked it.
I'm hoping to be able to meet this person and get a photo of the oval on his wall.
A group of graduate students recently contacted me because they had been studying the Baji Lives! installation Williamsburg Bridge as part of their class on art education. It turns out their group has an interest in how public art can inspire art making. As a result of our collaboration, these students produced a gallery installation and presented a paper at a conference on innovation in art education. We also put up ovals around Columbia campus to liven up the Ivy League a bit.
A small but enthusiastic group of Baji Lives! suporters gathered to eat tacos, drink home-brew and paint some little chillers. A few brave souls tried their hand at cutting out the color ovals. Guests of honor Bill Jensen and Margrit Lewczuk, sipped wine and oversaw the frenzy.
An installation in the alley next to my friend Tamara's studio in Bushwick. Even the trash pile deserves a bit of love.
I went to Berlin carrying several hundred oval stickers. I put up a bunch myself and gave away lots more to German artists that I met. Soon we'll have photos of where the Berliners themselves have chosen to place the colors in their city.
Some shapes that will soon be part of the new mold from which the latest crop of 'little chillers' will be cast.