White Park Intervention
(Liverpool/New York Exchange Programme)
Kofi Fosu Forson
We debuted at White Park last night (Oct 13, 2007) on 106th street. It was the culmination of the Liverpool/New York exchange programme curated by Gaynor Evelyn Sweeney featuring Daiva Gauryte and myself, Kofi Fosu.
The exchange programme appropriately titled Gender, Space, Art and Architecture began this summer of 2007. Daiva and I established this project all in cyber space. Week after week for ten weeks, she and I responded to captions set aside by the curator, Gaynor Evelyn Sweeney. They featured topics on everything from Identity to Societal Semiotics and Urban Environment.
My impression was that it helped me evaluate the difference between the person and the artist. Something I’ve worked with all of my practice. Only this time in doing so, I had a partner to achieve the very goals we were both assigned to do.
I walked into Media Noche with Judith and her two friends gathered, Antonia, a painter and video artist from Mexico and Ursula, a performance artist I believe from Austria. I sat among them and enjoyed a nice conversation about time and how it prevents us from fulfilling all of our dreams.
Judith's friend, Freddy and I helped pack up for the very brief drive to White Park. At the park, Judith, Freddy and I set up. We were then ready. A white wall stood in the middle of the rather spacious park.
It was a Saturday evening and there were several people gathered in what was a spectacular setting. Our spirits were livened when the video lit up the wall as we stood in the dark with the street lights offering ample lighting. Judith's impression of the whole evening was that it was an intervention. The whole purpose was to stand by the fence watching the video, inspiring people to do the same. We attracted the casual onlookers and were ready with flyers with information about the project.
One gentleman was apparently very curious. He had been to England and made a stop in Liverpool. His curiosity led him to ask me questions concerning my personal philosophy within the concept of Gender, Space, Art & Architecture. He was smart. We had a nice chat. He further questioned me on my opinion on race. He felt I was smarting quite a bit. I let him know about the prospects of lineage and hybridism...And how that qualifies me individualistically, much the same for him. We said our good-byes, not before I gave him my business card.
It was a brisk evening. We labored around and watched as people stopped to look. All the while, the chemistry between Judith and me was sound. We were thrilled by the project as it was evolving before our eyes. The night was somewhat enchanting. Given the location and its mystery there was a feeling of a high percentage in my heart. It was crucial to have seen the video in a public space bringing to mind Gaynor’s theory of Architecture and identity.
As a New Yorker, I belonged to this setting which defied nature and as a park it was much like a physical space of whiteness. The sight of the video as it improved from the introductions to the hyper-panic images of Liverpool and New York, all the way through to the captions of me, Kofi Fosu and Daiva Gauryte talking about the project, with the end product being the art work featured in the programme, was a spectacle to the eye. To stand and watch it as it evolved was magnificent.
Certainly our (Media Noche/Transvoyeur) intervention at White Park was captured on video. Considering the feeling it evoked, judging by the mood and temperature, color of night, that feeling of Saturday night, it made it worthwhile.