Monday, April 9, 2012

File under Free Art: "Free: A Utopian Project" at Mills College

Great minds think alike! Add food, music, arts & crafts demonstrations/DIY and this adds up to a concept similar to the SF Bay Area Free Art Exchange that Doug Millison started thinking and writing about earlier this year,, which sprouted the Little Free Art Gallery concept with Heidi Rand.

Free: A Utopian Project

…In order for my projects to be successful I need you to come in and take whatever you want. I arrange these active, social installations with you in mind. I have art supplies and art (art by me, art by others); new stuff and very old stuff; collectibles and collections; plants, cameras, furniture; nostalgia, melancholy, memories, generosity and greed, but good greed, not that bad kind of greed...but don't be too greedy, there's plenty for everyone.

I have been accumulating for the last 2 years and most has been gleaned free or through alternative means from Craigslist, eBay, and friends. I am keeping a journal, online and in print, of my experiences while collecting, images of the things I am offering, the stories from the people who gave. If (when) you find something you would like I can tell you some part of its story, either the story of how it was obtained or the story of its people, so ask me, I'm right here. Every object has a story, a past, maybe some ghosts and I'm happy to share.

I believe there really is something for everyone. I ask all of you to embrace the dance between choices and possibilities. Some of you will jump in with glee, and I thank you for your enthusiasm; some of you will be more hesitant and I just ask that you please forget your constraints, let go of any inhibitions, be they social or economic, forget the stigma of free. Get in there! Indulge yourself in the experience of being allowed to touch and take stuff in a gallery/museum, normally taboo but now expected and encouraged. I hope you take something, I want you to take something.

And while you are there consider the possibilities of a utopian free economy that bypasses monetary exchange. Crazy, I know. Think about the abundance of things and the ecological impact of passing along instead of throwing away; receiving rather than purchasing. Consider the value of things, the value of art, art materials, objects - the value of memories, sentimentality and stories.

Pass it on, pay it forward. Give free, get free. Cool right?

Thank you,

Jocelyn Meggait

(obsessive collector, benefactor, conduit, artist)

Next FREE installation location:

The Last Show on Earth
Mills College MFA Exhibition 2012
Mills College Art Museum, 5000 MacArthur Blvd. Oakland, CA
April 28, 2012 through May something.

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