PAR Recruiting Station, May 6-8, 2006

I am 5, Reverse Art Fair
Parkers's Box
193 Grand Street
Brooklyn, NY 11211

The "Pavilion for the American Resistance" was a parody of a pavilion for the Venice Biennale 2005. It was conceived in the wake of President George W. Bush's reelection in 2004, and was envisioned as an arts pavilion representing a revolutionary government during an uprising in the United States. It was a multi-media interactive installation and series of events that was exhibited at Parker's Box, in Brooklyn, NY, and Buzzer 30 Gallery in Astoria, Queens.

The project at Parker's Box took the form of a recruiting station, where we used the two day fair to explore ideas of resistance and its possible forms with the visitors to the gallery. Below are images from the fair, showing our open and collectively written manifesto, our membership cards and our John Hancock guest book, which preserved the anonymity of our growing membership.

The artists involved in developing this project were Bibi Calderaro, Mike Estabrook, Vandana Jain, Pierre Obando and Cat Tyc.

Visitors were invited to join the Pavilion of the American Resistance, by signing our guestbook and receiving a PAR-issued handrawn ID card.

In respect for anonymity, all visitors were asked to sign "John Hancock." The diversity of handwritings, along with their identifying monsters, created a unique portrait of our membership.

Once the members had signed up and were issued their ID cards, they were invited to add their statements to the ever growing manifesto, contributing their thoughts on activism and resistance. The wall had been ruled with blue chalk, simulating a large note pad.

Two video monitors played footage of masked persons reading various texts and manifestos, ranging from original writings, the Bill of Rights, the lyrics to "the Girl from Ipanema," and passages from Lewis Hyde's "The Gift."

Working off of the conceit of army recruiting videos, both monitors were constantly playing, adding to the general din and cacophony.

"I am a Real Artist," collaged onto a kite, announced the PAR to the gallery visitors on the main floor.