Making "public art" difficult to experience seems to be a trend these days. Ai Weiwei did it twice, first with an "invisible" installation in Poland and again with a work in the middle of the desert in collaboration with Navajo artist Bert Benally. More recently, we learned that Portuguese artist Joao Onofre's installation for London's Sculpture in the City project will be easy to see, but by design, it will be impossible to hear. Alfredo Barsuglia's Social Pool installation won't be invisible or silent, but like the Weiwei x Benally installation, you will have to explore the desert to find it.
"There is no road. There is no fence. There is no sign. There is no trail. You just come on it. I'm sure some people won't find it," said the artist to the Los Angeles Times. To access the pool, one has to visit the MAK Center for Art and Architecture in Los Angeles for a key and GPS coordinates to the installation in the Mojave Desert.
In explaining the piece, Barsuglia told the LA Times that is about "the effort people make to reach a luxury good...I'm interested in the way that these are often integrated into the architecture of a house. And, often, people will have a pool, but they don't even get into it. They just like to show that they have it. It shows they don't have to think about water." Each person who takes the key is asked to contribute a gallon of water to the pool and are warned about the difficult experience. "You really have to go and search for it," Barsuglia says. "I've gotten stuck in the sand. Plus, if you drive in, it destroys the desert ecology...There is an element of danger to it, too. There are scorpions and rattlesnakes. You might get heat stroke. I recommend not going alone."
The installation will be open through September 30. For more information, visit the Social Pool website.
[via LA Times]