The RedBall Project is a traveling public art project that has travelled from Abu Dhabi, Taipei, Perth, England, Barcelona, St. Louis, Korea and Portland to Sydney, Arizona, Chicago and Toronto, and has already received a National Award from Americans for the Arts Public Art Network. Directly inspired by the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games, the London visit (co-produced by Torbay Council and The Dartington Hall Trust ) of the huge RedBall Project has just ended, after changing quite a few locations, astonishing all Brits.
Born in Chicago, Kurt Perschke has also lived in the Virgin Islands, St. Louis, Vienna, and Cairo, Egypt. If that’s not enough for you to get green with envy, notice that he currently lives and works in New York City. But what’s important here is this plastic red ball.
RedBall Project inflates where it’s not supposed to be and gets in the way of everyday life in unexpected ways.
“I utilize my opportunity as an artist to be a catalyst for new encounters within the everyday. Through the magnetic, playful, and charismatic nature of the RedBall Project the work is able to access the imagination embedded in all of us. On the surface, the experience seems to be about the ball itself as an object, but the true power of the project is what it can create for those who experience it. It opens a doorway to imagine what if? As RedBall Project travels around the world people approach me on the street with excited suggestions about where to put it in their city. In that moment the person is not a spectator but a participant in the act of imagination. I have witnessed it across continents, diverse age spans, cultures, and languages, always issuing an invitation”, says Kurt Perschke.
But in the very end, the larger arc of the project is really how each city responds to Perschke’s red invitation and, over time, what the developing story reveals about our individual and cultural imagination. And what used to be neglected space, becomes instantly a realm of possibilities. Red possibilities. Could Parthenon be his next location? Could the Ministry of Culture & Tourism tolerate, let alone appreciate it?
Here’s to hope.
The impressive UK Video
All images Copyright Kurt Perschke