June 12, 2015

United Nations of Hamtramck: Porous Borders Festival

A lot of what I have to say about the excellent Porous Borders Festival, I said here, at Hyperalleric, and here, at Knight Arts. But those don’t touch on my personal contribution to the festival, which is a flag series called¬†United Nations of Hamtramck – five original flag works created almost entirely out of materials found around Hamtramck. It was a lot of fun to make, although I wish I’d had a little more time to really explore all of Hamtramck’s amazing thrift stores and Indian dress shops. Time constraints and being pulled in multiple directions are sometimes fun, sometimes a little inhibiting to the creative process (as I’m sure Porous Borders organizers, the indefatigable Hinterlands can well relate).


I also did a series of handheld flags for festival-goers, featuring the Hamtramck border shape. It was fun to see people carrying them around, and you can catch a glimpse of them in the video above which, if it fails to put a smile in your heart, get a new heart, I say. I especially like the first-half soundtrack by Automatic Music practitioner¬†Frank Pahl, and of course, who doesn’t love the Detroit Party Marching Band? No one. No one doesn’t love them.

Major shout-out to Hinterlands fellow Dave Sanders, who braved a 30-foot ladder on an active street to help me hang my installation.

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