We were invited to develop a construction for an exhibit entitled 'Couched Constructions' at the Herron School of Art at IUPUI in Indianapolis, and curated by Wes Janz.
Developed with colleague Jack Ames, the piece is conceived as a member of a possible ensemble of similar constructions, which inhabit the public space of the street. For us, the piece considers the issue of the legitimacy of the homeless condition in [urban] public space – and how it might be emblematic of such. This arguably marginal status is represented in both its materiality and mobility – as it attempts to approximate similar structures such as information kiosks, bus shelters, food vendor carts, and parking attendant stations. As with mobile homes, its mobility is more potential than actual. As such, it is intended to highlight themes of ownership, authority, exposure, transience and community – by functioning as a “portable anchor” for individuals or groups, and be a point of meeting and/or public exchange.
The inner structure of the piece is made from two inverted couch frames. The outer slat surface pivots in the front to form a small canopy and may be closed for easy transport. It is fabricated from reclaimed pallet lumber of varying wood species. The outer face of the slats were left in their found raw state, while the inner face was cut – revealing the natural beauty of the color and grains. Within the frames is a bench surface with storage below. As with the couch, we thought of the interiority of the piece as a comforting presence – a place of keepsakes - photos, clothing, light, and hope.
Dara Eskridge, Susan Reynolds, Jason Ganley, Jocelyn Poe, Gabrielle Riley, Benjamin Wells, Michael Ash, Brionna Catrow, Tim Thomas
Pallet Express . Lake City, GA