Text: Julie Schwietert Collazo
Photos: Francisco Collazo
One of the wearying characteristics of New York to which I refuse to concede is standing in line.
No, I will not wait in line for an hour to eat a burger and fries from The Shake Shack. I don’t care if God himself flipped the burger.
I won’t join the fawning throngs waiting for their “opportunity” to buy the horrifically primitive-sounding “cronut.” I don’t care what gustatory miracle will purportedly occur if I am so “lucky” to score a cronut.
And I won’t stand in line to see an art exhibit.
Francisco went last Saturday and said the line stretched around a full city block, despite rain. It’s expected that the next two Saturdays will see lines just as long, if not longer, given the fantastic coverage the work has received in the media, and its ephemeral nature.
Lozano-Hemmer’s light and sound piece is inside the Park Avenue Tunnel, which runs from 33rd to 40th Streets. Normally off-limits to pedestrians–it’s an active traffic tunnel–Lozano-Hemmer negotiated with city officials to close the tunnel for six hours on three consecutive Saturdays for the show. In a post-9/11 world and a self-important city where practically everything involving public space requires permission and permits, the negotiation was no small feat, and Lozano-Hemmer conceded little to city authorities who wanted to control certain aspects of the installation.
For that, and because it’s so fleeting, I just might stand in line this Saturday.
To experience the installation without standing in line, check out Francisco’s video from the first iteration of the installation.