HammerSpace Artwork Rolling Down Broome Yesterday [Video]

Posted on: October 25th, 2010 at 6:26 am by

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At around 4 pm yesterday evening, a flamboyant spectacle rolled slowly down Broome Street.  It was covered in clutter, and punctuated by an outstretched arm holding a taxidermy hawk.  Along the way, numerous tourists and other passing pedestrians whipped around in amazement, all with that WTF expression on their faces. Our first impression from a distance was that it was an all-too-familiar overloaded shopping cart of empties.  Not so.

In actuality, it’s a wacky art exhibit built upon a dolly and operated by one man from within. Just before sounding a loud horn to alert his presence to oncoming Allen Street motorists, we got the scoop on the situation. The installation, dubbed “El Guaraguao en El Barrio,” is part of the HammerSpace pop-up gallery currently occupying the vacant sub-level space at 104 Forsyth Street. Artist Alejandro Guzman crafted the strange structure from found junk after a month-long period scouring El Barrio (Spanish Harlem).

“El Guaraguao En El Barrio” is a play on nature, migration, and human consumption. The Guaraguao is a Taino name given to the RedTail Hawk that lives in Puerto Rico and is also found in New York City. Falconry is the sport of hunting with a bird of prey. In “El Guaraguao en El Barrio”, the artist converts himself through sculpture into a formless mound of found objects, trash, construction remains, and symbols of culture. The Red Tail Hawk is used to “lure”,a falconry term, the audience to the artwork. A metaphor on our environmental problems & humanities interaction with nature.

Yesterday was the grand opening of the exhibit.  Hence all the street theatrics.

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