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Thu, May 25 2017 5:00 pm - 9:00 pm


Concrete Actions
Thursday, May 25, 2017
Boston City Hall
5:00 pm – 9:00 pm

The Mobius Artists Group is pleased to announce Concrete Actions, an evening of site-inspired original works responding to the striking concrete modernist design of City Hall and the democratic ideals that continue to animate it. Commissioned by The Mayor’s Office of Arts and Culture, City of Boston as part of the HEROIC ENCOUNTERS Series, Concrete Actions will unfold on Thursday, May 25th at Boston City Hall, from 5-9 p.m. Thirteen Mobius artists will activate the interior of the building through a diversity of media. The civic landmark will be transformed through aesthetic experimentation in interactive performance art, video, installation, sound and movement.

Recent shifts in our current national political landscape and challenges to core values of inclusion have revived civic engagement in local democratic processes and institutions. It is therefore an appropriate moment to celebrate the architectural legacy of Boston City Hall, opened in 1969. The building’s innovative design reflected the architects’ ethical commitment to active public involvement and access to city government, as Mark Pasnik, Chris Grimley, and Michael Kubo emphasize in their book Heroic: Concrete Architecture and the New Boston that inspired the HEROIC ENCOUNTERS Series. Against this background, the Mobius Artist Group is honored to create Concrete Actions as part of the series.

As a collective event, Concrete Actions aptly marks the Mobius Artists Group return to Boston after a productive 5 years in Cambridge. Now in our 40th year as an artist-run organization, our legacy of accessibility, affordability and collaboratively generated experimental work in all media across artistic communities parallels the strong public commitments that inspired the design of Boston City Hall and continue to revitalize it.

Photo is by Jeffrey Montes – Creative Commons 2.0

This project is supported in part by an award from the National Endowment for the Arts.

Participating artists:

El Putnam presents Digital Bru(i)t, a video that interplays visual and aural confusion in an attempt to convey the complexities and challenges of maneuvering human engagement with politics through digital technology. The work incorporates excerpts from The Social Contract, by Jean-Jacques Rousseau (1762).

Jane Wang presents two works, Signs of Our Times III, a video slideshow of imagery from 95 artists and 21 composers reflecting the connecting theme of signage, and Concret concret, a duo of free-standing abstract wire sculptures, one of which she will knit live, in the main lobby of Boston City Hall.

Milan Kohout presents Spaces for Socialism, an interactive performance that engages audience members in conversation about their experience of architecture, interactive sharing of the human condition, and perspectives on how to create democratic socialist alternatives to modern life.

James Ellis Coleman presents Always Room for You, a visual art work exploring the scope and inclusion of the life histories of individuals as recorded in government documents stored in government repositories.

Joanne Rice and Tom Plsek present 42.3604° N, 71.0580° W, a sound/performance which explores the various sonic possibilities offered by the interiors spaces of several levels of Boston City Hall.

Sandrine Schaefer presents ESCALATE/DE-ESCALATE, a durational performance art piece sited on the escalators between the lobby and lower levels of Boston City Hall that explores notions of agreement and challenges ways time is experienced and perceived between bodies sharing space.

Daniel Deluca presents Public Satellites: Telstar 20 BCH, an experimental communications platform designed to engage the public around City Hall. Through the use of semiotic lures PST20BCH will capture and relay human transmissions from the public in real time.

Jesse Kaminsky presents Aposematism, an inflatable sculpture work made of brightly colored, printed and sewn tyvek material that will enhance the ground space with an anemone-like shape.

Margaret Bellafiore, Mari Novotny Jones, and Anna Wexler present MILK & LICENSES, a performance and installation work using three defunct services windows in Boston City Hall. The piece explores concepts of sanctuary in our present moment by transforming the windows’ original function.

Sara June presents Solid Formation, a durational movement and installation work that experiment with the notion of protection and architecture through the intersection of three elements: building, boundary, and human body.

Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License(unless otherwise indicated) © 2019