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Thursday, April 26, 2012

Durham Storefront Project 

The Durham Storefront Project is presenting its fantastic second round of site-specific installations in downtown Durham storefronts. Last year's install was amazing! As you will see in the photographs below, by our beloved Scenes from my Lunch Hour, this year is even better.

The installations are already up and will be through May 18th. There are all kinds of easily walkable locations ranging from the Five Points intersection to Parrish Street and beyond.

This Spring the Durham Storefront Project invited artists to examine the growth in downtown activity through an architectonic, theoretical, or experiential lens. After reviewing over thirty proposals, the Durham Storefront Project selected artists who it felt explored points of connection within the spaces themselves as well as the downtown environment and its surrounding community.

The list includes artists Justin Cook, Gabrielle Duggan, Elsewhere and Whitney Trettien, Julia Gartrell and Julianne Alexander, Jessye McDowell, Parasol B, Marc Russo, the Triangle Performing Arts Network (TPAN), and the Sacrificial Poets.

Center Studio Architecture at #339 W. Main St. hosts “Static Live” by Jessye McDowell. This interactive piece displays simple animated graphics that respond to the movements of passersby. As viewers play with the installation, they can see the immediate and rebounding effects of their interactions.

“Static Live”
Photo credit Scenes from my Lunch Hour

Elsewhere and Whitney Trettien transform the windows of #212 W. Main St., the Trust Building (Teermark Building), into a “biblio-geography” - a landscape of books that highlights the book’s purpose as a site of exchange between people and ideas. The piece also has an interactive element that allows viewers to send a text to which the books will respond.

Photo credit Scenes from my Lunch Hour

Through this Lens at #303 E Chapel Hill St. hosts the video piece “Bringing Nature In” by artist Marc Russo. He creates an uncomfortable and harmonic combination of digital and natural elements. Surrounded by natural textures, foliage, and falling leaves, two video monitors play abstract documentary footage of places throughout Durham.

#200 North Mangum St. features an installation by Gabrielle Duggan. Entitled “Wrapped Interiors: Sinew and Synapses,” the piece reveals ideas of survival through adaptation and the impact that has on the mind and body. The installation itself is evidence of adaptation as the fibers create a site-specific network connecting found and makeshift talismans and transform an empty window into a site of public art.

“Depiction” by Parasol B. starts with the large, hand-painted QR code featured in the window of Scratch Bakery and continues with QR codes scattered throughout downtown. The piece takes participants on a journey through downtown and prompts them to contribute to a photo album of less-noticed details about the area.

The windows of #119 Market St. feature the documentary work of Justin Cook. Viewers can revel in the powerful imagery, examining the faces of friends, neighbors, and strangers – real people building their lives together who would be harmed by Amendment One. The photographs are part of the COMMITMENT | NC documentary project, an initiative Cook and other photographers started in order to communicate the injustice of the proposed Amendment One to the North Carolina constitution.

Photo credit Scenes from my Lunch Hour1

The Durham Storefront Project’s spring installations will be accompanied by some live public performances from the Triangle Performing Arts Network (TPAN) and the Sacrificial Poets. Performances will take place during the Spring Durham Art Walk on April 28-29.

What a project! What a weekend! Get out and celebrate your artists Durham. Exercise. Stop and get a bite to eat. Stroll past all of these storefronts. Revel in the fact that you live in a city where all this happens and it is still easy to park and commute.2

Photo credit Scenes from my Lunch Hour

1Obviously this is a photo of a photo.

2For those of you who say it is getting harder, yes, but compared to elsewhere...EASY PEASY.

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