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People often ask about my inspirations and how I developed @the14thfactory. This is my story...
The 14th Factory for NYC was planned to open in spring 2015 at the 100 year old JP Morgan bank on Wall Street, opposite the NASDAQ. There is an amazing history around that location that ties in brilliantly with the overarching concepts of the exhibition. It's where America was created. George Washington was sworn in across the street from the space.
While the logistics were being worked out, many hurdles appeared at an alarming rate (NYC is a difficult place to do anything), permits, money, partners, but I had faith we could find support. The project was so huge after all, the story so compelling, so many wonderful artists, so much goodwill. As a non-profit, the benefit to the community too.
I hired a competent team and found lots of volunteers, so left them to do their thing while I went to build the art. With a secure venue, a blueprint for content (we were working a year ahead of the opening date) and with KplusK Architect's master planning work, a comprehensive layout, we went in 100% and committed.
Each artwork was challenging on many levels. I had to crash my old Ferrari at the Tsing Ma Bridge where I used to work. One take only, can't crash it twice, upcycling luxury to artwork. The crash shoot was more expensive than the car. I asked Ferrari to sponsor it, they were very insulted.
The Ferrari before crash
The Ferrari after crash
I ran around the world hunting for punk rockers from the Sex Pistols, Bauhaus, Crass, The Beat, The Specials, Dead Kennedys, Selecta, GBH, Exploited...and one of my favorites, The Meteors.
Scouting airplane graveyards in Mojave, salvaging tails, to be transported to a new composition as huge sculptures in a massive black pool, emerging from the dark water like rows of shark fins. Organized 300 factory workers to fight in a Beijing factory, shot by Wing Shya.
Found 300 pitchforks, salvaged from farms in China and the US. Filmed Brooklyn street dancers, shot in NYC by Scott Carthy, flipping over the camera on a clear blue day. Working with NASA. Stanley Wong's logo, the flags hanging at the entrance, and the 14th logo. Gary Gunn's audio composition throughout the show. And on and on, creative collaborations in many countries with many people. Yes that is Jello Biafra.
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