My learning center was left to a very short amount of time because I’m dumb. As was my speech, as was most of my eminent project. That said however, I feel that with some help from my wonderful parents, I got everything done in time for the night, and despite my not being there, I heard everything went pretty well. So without further ado, here is the learning center construction!
My plan with my learning center was to get a locker bay and create a ‘back alley’ that Banksy had graffitied. I wanted to have the impression that it was Banksy’s final piece, so I wanted to make sure it wasn’t any old piece.
For the text itself, I took a look at all of Banksy’s art that I could find, and eventually settled on a very simple piece of text he originally painted in Central London. It might leave some headscratching (isn’t graffiti illegal?) but in this work he is implying that graffiti is illegal, and thus does change things.
I also wanted to recreate the rat, a trademark image that is seemingly everpresent in Banksy’s art (it’s even in that one above), so that was another large component of what I wanted in my centre.
Another component of Eminent night I needed to produce was my speech. Because of my Metfest performance I wasn’t able to be at the night itself, so a lot of preparation had to go into my speech. I didn’t want to record it as a video, because Banksy isn’t much for being filmed anymore (after the catastrophe that was his documentary Exit Through the Gift Shop), so instead I opted for just audio. That left, however, whatever it was the audience was going to see while my speech played. Rather than a projection, I hired an actual person for a live performance. Emma M, a morning nine and my savior, accepted my request to be my actress, playing the role of Banksy, and I got to work on her props.
The idea of my speech was that Banksy was talking while working on his final piece. He was sick and tired of people trying to identify him, and so he is doing it for them in his final work. Here is the speech.
The next thing I made was the work of art ‘Banksy’ was creating as he spoke, which was a large banner. The intent of this was so that Banksy could identify himself and effectively burn himself as an anonymous artist, so he could move on. However, he is interrupted. My plan for this work of art was a large banner made to look like a regular wall like that of my learning center, that Emma would ‘spray paint’ as she spoke.
I first got the large piece of asphalt paper, and then added some mock brick work in white pastel. Then, I painstakingly cut out large stencils out of paper for every letter I was going to paint. After taping these onto my piece of paper, I needed to spray paint. Bare in mind this was approximately at 12:30 AM. I needed a large space with good ventilation, but it was very dark outside and my garage is not ideal for this sort of thing. So I did what anyone would do, I dressed in black and laid some tarps in my driveway, and channeled my inner Banksy, spray painting in the pitch black.
So here are some pictures of it, for those of you get that tingly feeling in your skull when something is oddly satisfying, you’ll like stencil before and after pictures.
This went on stage, and although I heard there was some difficulty with what I had set up, it ended up working in the end.
Overall, I believe that my Eminent 2014 project went quite well, all considered! I leave you with one final image, post-spray-paint-misadventure, with my dad and I, a real pair of criminals.