Friday, November 06, 2015

LA Mayor commits $19.76 per serious pedestrian/bicyclist incident per year to help reduce such accidents

Here's an interesting article:


Here is some data from LA about traffic incidents.

This seems to imply that the deaths & serious injuries this artist will try to help reduce are:

Total deaths and serious injury = (200 deaths per year) + (950 injuries in 2013) = 1150 incidents. 

According to the fact sheet, 44% of those incidents are with pedestrians or bicyclists. So 1150 x 44% = 506 pedestrian/bicyclist related deaths or serious injury per year. 

The Mayor of LA is committing $10,000 (that's right! Only $10,000 - the contract is for one year, potentially renewable. See the info here

So, $10,000/506 incidents is $19.76 allocated per incident

A few questions (I have my own answers for these - what are yours?):

A) Where is the criticism that this basically amounts to zero support to help reduce pedestrian/bicyclist deaths?

B) As far as news is concerned, why is this in the entertainment section? How and why is trying to reduce citizen deaths an entertainment article?

C) The Mayor of LA is only committing $10,000 per year for each of the next two years (sort of - the contract is a one year potentially renewable). The artist is expected to work 900 hours (see here) over the two years, for a whopping $22.22 an hour as - potentially - a self employed individual with business expenses like a studio, liability insurance, health insurance, etc. Except for appealing to ego and sense of authorship - which is antithetical to the social practice movement - why would an artist even do this? Or how could an artist (unless already wealthy) be able to participate?

D) Is this insulting to all the employees of the City of LA who work on these kinds of problems that their Mayor seems to think they are incapable of dealing with this? And yet an uber-part-time, poorly paid artist might have a better shot than they at solving this? 

Thoughts?


Wednesday, June 17, 2015

ExpressingBoston intervention

Last Wednesday at around 10 AM, I installed two vertical wrought iron friezes where once had been tempered safety glass at the Four Corners/Geneva Ave MBTA station in Dorchester. There are approximately six "moments" like this at the station where there is a bench, a small roof, and tiny (17" wide) glass sidelights that would provide a modicum of shelter to a pedestrian. Universally all the glass in the station has been broken, and most of it removed, save the shards of tempered glass stuck to the caulking.

The stations, along the Indigo/Fairmount Line, see only a minimum of use - buses run more frequently and are less expensive that the MBTA. The stations are designed and constructed in a brutalist manner - heavy concrete walls, and galvanized structural steel posts, railings, etc. The reproductions of art from local artists, although laudable, do little to soften the oppressive prison-like architecture of the space.

As part of my nine months as a fellow of the ExpressingBoston Fellowship supported by the Boston Foundation, I repaired one of the small waiting stations by installing forged and welded decorative steel friezes in the frames where the glass had once been. Painted bright yellow, and forming a repetitive and undulating pattern, the frieze stands in joyful opposition to the built surroundings.


Tuesday, April 07, 2015

Great piece of public art! No one was injured in the installation of this piece. Not sure I agree with the anonymity....