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9/30 Christy Hengst Artist’s Talk

Bosque del Apache, New Mexico. 12/6/09. Photo: Maria de las Casas.

Christy Hengst

Artist’s Talk and “Birds in the Park” Landing

Thursday, September 30, 2010

6pm Tipton Hall

$10 general admission | $5 students/seniors/members

As the closing event to the two-year long “Birds in the Park” project by artist Christy Hengst, we are pleased to host the final bird landing and an artist’s talk and look back at the project.

“Birds in the Park” is a traveling public art project started in 2008. Both event and exhibition, it involves the temporary installation of a flock of porcelain birds, which appear one day and are gone the next. The birds have cobalt images and text silk-screened and fired onto them, investigating aspects of humanity, specifically around war and peace. Inherent to this work is the question, what kind of future do memories create? Layering newspaper articles and photographs from the beginning of the invasion of Iraq, with poetry and other evidences of the strength and depth of our common humanity, Hengst explores how we are connected, and also the unthinkable ways in which that bond is disregarded.

For most citizens, as well as for Hengst, personal experience of this war has been mainly through the media. It could be said that the media had a large role in the U.S. public’s acceptance of the decision to go to war. Thus this project also looks at how the invasion of Iraq was “sold” to regular people, and how discussions about the cold facts of war, weapons capabilities etc. can become detached from the human reality on the other end, creeping into everyday life as something normal, like birds in the park.

The final landings for “Birds in the Park” are:

Friday, September 24th and Saturday, September 25th 8am — 6 pm, Santa Fe Railyard Park, Guadalupe and Cerrillos Road.

Thursday, September 30th — the birds will touch down at Tipton Hall one last time during a look back at the history of the project with slides and stories. Landing: 5pm-7pm, Talk: 6pm

The birds have landed in over sixty locations, including Central Park in NY, beaches along the coast of California, a sculpture garden in New Orleans, the National Mall in Washington DC, Chartres Cathedral in France, Santa Fe, Germany, the Netherlands and even migrating as far as the Galapagos Islands.

For twenty years, Christy Hengst’s work has followed a double track of more intimate art meant for inside, and site-specific art out in the public realm. Solo shows of Hengst’s paintings have been presented in museums and galleries in the US, Germany, and Ecuador. Public art projects have spanned the range from a guerilla text installation to elaborately tiled bus shelters. Hengst lives in Santa Fe and has two children.

Information about the project and pictures of all the landings can be found at www.christyhengst.com <http://www.christyhengst.com>

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