The Parrish Road Show hits the road and heads west for the launch of the 2017 edition of the site-specific and off-site artist project. This year, the Long Island-based art collective, Auto Body, is in the driver's seat. For their project, the group of artists and curators has created a series of road-side signs installed from Brookhaven to Southampton along Montauk Highway on the South Shore of Long Island.
An Opening Reception that is open to the public takes place in Brookhaven on Saturday, August 12, 2017 from 3 to 5 p.m. at the Bush Farms and Museum. Members of Auto Body will be on hand to discuss the installation and the Bush Farms and Museum is open for touring. Attending is free. Brookhaven hamlet is located in the Town of Brookhaven just west of Bellport Village.
Bush Farms and Museum was originally a dairy farm that was converted into a duck farm in the 1940s. It's bas been owned for nearly 40 years by Ron Bush, whose collection of farm tools, equipment, trucks, and tractors are displayed in 11 buildings on the five-acre property. Also on view is custom footwear by Bush’s aunt, Elizabeth Katz, who designed shoes for first ladies and movie stars.
For this year’s Road Show project, Auto Body has transformed common roadside signage into public art through text-based artworks positioned along a 35-mile span of Montauk Highway. Auto Body reimagines advertising from a medium that promotes consumerism to one that calls attention to natural environments of the region. The installation opened on August 1 and continues through September 4, 2017.
The project also serves to enhance the perception of Montauk Highway, one of the oldest and most scenic roadways on Long Island, from a utilitarian thoroughfare to a space for viewing art. Drivers are encouraged to stop and discover something new in the area.
Several local businesses along the highway collaborate by offering their property as sites for the artworks, which consist of nature-themed colloquial phrases painted on wood boards. Attached to each sign post are small plaques that highlight a nearby natural site: the Great South Bay, a bird sanctuary, a hiking trail, or a scenic outlook. Informational material at each site will map out and provide insight on the locations. The sites, and the phrases on the installations, include:
Varney's Restaurant, Brookhaven: HAPPY AS A CLAM
Ronnie Bush Farm and Museum, Brookhaven: HOLD YOUR HORSES
Carman's River Canoe and Kayak, Brookhaven: IT TAKES TWO TO CANOE
Mustard Seed Café, Center Moriches: REAP WHAT YOU SOW
Easterner Motel, Southampton: HIGH AND DRY
Parrish Art Museum, Water Mill: RED RIGHT RETURN
The closing reception on Sunday, August 27, from 5:00 to 7:00pm, will take place outdoors at the Parrish Art Museum, the easternmost site of the installation. The building, designed by the award-winning architects Herzog & de Meuron, was inspired by barns that were repurposed as studios by artists drawn to the region for decades.
Parrish Road Show is presented annually in August and features temporary projects by artists from this region. Ongoing since 2012, the series is designed to deeply connect creativity to everyday life by presenting exhibitions and programs in unexpected places—from public parks to historic sites—across the area.
BASIC FACTS: The Parrish Road Show holds its Opening Reception on Saturday, August 12, 2017 from 3 to 5 p.m. at Bush Farms and Museum, 2948 Montauk Highway, Brookhaven, NY 11719. A Closing Reception will be held in The Hamptons on Sunday, August 27, 2017 from 5 to 7 p.m. at the Parrish Art Museum, 279 Montauk Highway, Water Mill, NY.
Auto Body is a collation of artists and curators who curate exhibitions and installations in unexpected places. They formed in Bellport, N.Y. with their initial exhibitions presented in a former auto body shop.
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