Monday, April 28, 2014

Free Air Samples! Free Plants!

On Friday the lovely, Kate and I set up shop just inside the entrance to the library. I was giving out free samples of imported air from the cleanest, freshest places in the world! and taking orders for more of it. We had air from the untouched Antarctic, tropical Samoa, freshy fresh Patagonia, and crispy New Zealand. We invited everyone to unscrew a sample container and inhale the freshness. Oh, it was fresh. New Zealand air was quite popular, and we ran out of that first.

Some took the little jars to go, someone asked us if they should put it in their fridge? Most looked at us skeptically or with great curiosity or great confusion. haha. Quite a few people asked us if this had anything to do with a scene from Space Balls? Which I hadn't heard of until now, but just before the sale I learned about air sales from the movie The Lorax, and the idea is similar. I told people that we were trying to bring fresh air back to Cache Valley, especially during the winter months. Someone looked at me and said, "couldn't we just drive less?" Exactly. We aren't really "selling clean air," but our air here isn't clean. We don't drink dirty water, but there's a huge industry for bottled water now, and when bottled water first came out, that seemed like a totally crazy idea. The point is that we could end up having to sell clean air, or we could all try to do our part and avoid that. The latter would be nice! I started looking online to see if this had been done before, and it has! In Beijing, China, a millionaire philanthropist starting giving out and selling cans of Fresh Air! Another artist from Beijing auctioned off a jar of air from Provence, France for $860! All of this was done to encourage the government to get serious about the poor air quality. Check out photos of an event where fresh mountain air was brought to citizens in bags. Now bottled air is being sold at tourist sites. When I first thought of trying to sell clean air, I thought it was a totally nonsensical notion, turns out in some places it's already becoming a reality. 

After giving out some air, Kate offered an even better solution - natural air purifiers, aka Plants! She gave out wildflower seeds that were native to the area and that that attracted pollinators. Along with that she gave out compressed dirt (expands with water) and little decomposable pots that can be planted directly into the earth. Oh yeah, we even repurposed the used sample containers to hold wildflower seeds. 

Thus, everyone walked away with a little wildflower starter kit, and hopefully these can start spotting Logan with some color and air purity! yeah! Everyone seemed excited to get their new plants and start growing, and it was cool to give out something that can be part of the solution. 

It's been fun trying out the conceptual side of things as far as art goes, and really trying to help people rethink air quality. Thanks to everyone who stopped by to check it out! We had a great time. 

It's Important Because...

Check out Paige's finished project! After taking pictures of student's responses to her open-ended-white-board-statement she put them up in a big old collage. Go by the Quadside Cafe (connected to the library) to check it out. 

Some detail shots...

Friday, April 25, 2014

Clean Air For Sale!

Thanks to everyone who stopped by our clean air sale today! Kate and I stationed ourselves in the entrance of the library and offered samples of free air from exotic locations, and free plants. We had air from Antarctica, Samoa, Patagonia, and New Zealand - some of the freshest air in the world! Some people seemed a little skeptical of our imported air, and we'll post more info pertaining to that query in the next day or so! We also got to give out cool starter plants for native wild flowers and Paige's photography project went up today. Thanks USU and USU Library for making it a great day. Check back soon for more on all of these sweet events.

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Yesterday I blocked a window in the fine arts building with paper and added an invitation for all to make their own peep holes. Feel free to have at it of you happen to pass by! This piece reflects the filter of smog that we get in the winter when our air is polluted- it really blocks the view - but doing things that help keep the air clean, such as reducing driving etc in a way could make "peep holes" through the bad air. Little things make change. This morning I came back to a few changes!

Things are clearing up already! I'm interested to see how many people will be brave enough to start making their own holes. 

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Works in Progress

Here we see the lovely Paige kicking out her project on the TSC Patio at USU! She's offering students the chance to write down why they love clean air on a whiteboard, and get their picture taken with the sign. She's planning to make a collage of all the pics when she's finished! Oh, and there's also free candy to be had! There's an upcoming chance to check it out on Friday if you're bopping around!

Monday, March 17, 2014

Boys and Girls Club

This week we ventured to the Boys and Girls Club at the Bear River Charter School in Logan. Kate led the students in some awesome and environmental art projects! Everyone wrote down and drew pictures of things that they could do to help the air stay clearer during inversions. There were some awesome ideas!

Next, the children made paper models of particulates. They put Vaseline on these and will hang them outside. Over the course of the next week the design will capture air pollution and the kids will be able to have a visual of what the bad air looks like. 

Thank you to the Boys and Girls Club for letting us come today, and thank you for your great participation! The earth will be in good hands. 

Tuesday, February 4, 2014


I present to you the finished project! Colored by many helping hands. Thank you to everyone who participated! The final coloring was done on Wednesday, January 29. It only took 7 days to fill in 64 square feet of paper. I believe it would have been faster, but by the end of it, people were having a hard time accessing the very top and bottom of the color by numbers - to reach the top required very long arms or a chair to stand on, and coloring the very low portions presented difficult coloring angles. I am so grateful for all the people who helped make this a success. It's true that if everyone does a little bit, a lot can be accomplished. Let's keep it fresh and clear the air!

Also in air news check out what went down in SLC - a group of 4,000 protesters met at the state capitol for a clean air rally. They pushed for legislation to make changes so that the government will take an active role in reducing air pollution. These people mean action. Check it out here.