In 2006, Mercedes Teixido and I found land in Upstate, New York near the town of Hamden, in the center of Delaware County. We had sold our Pasadena house with the intention of taking the proceeds to make an informal residency program. A place where artists, students and thinkers with a variety of interests could come to get away and have time in a beautiful place to think, to make and to have conversation within a community of people.
The project spanned 10 years for me and continues now in another direction with Mercedes. The 140-acre parcel of land was a mixture of woodland and pasture on the sunny side of Chambers Hollow road. It would be site to many explorations of art and life. For me this was a project that brought together a great many of my interests and skills into a sprawling, ever expanding social practice piece.
ArtLandProjects took many forms but the through line for the project was to explore and manifest a built environment that reflected a more personal, and idiosyncratic expression of being, living and acting in the world. Make everything you can. Model social interactions and exchanges as a form of generosity and connection. Be in a community. Learn to grow food and live in relationship to a piece of land in a more intimate way. Explore art as part of the everyday to reflect specific, contextually relevant narratives. And while critique may be latent within the gesture, the project always returns to the questions “What kind of world do I want to live in?” and “How will I make it so?”