“Portable-on-Demand Art (PODA)”

Art comes in every shape, size and color container for the exhibit “Portable-on-Demand Art (PODA).” The Houston Arts Alliance has teamed up with Portable-on-Demand Storage (PODS) to supply a dozen shippable storage containers to local artists and arts groups to use in making their own public statements. These works will be on public display first at Discovery Green, then make their way around the city.

One contributor, Gabriel Martinez, has before now avoided private partnerships in art, instead planting his bus-station benches, sculptures made of scrap lumber and other found materials, in Brooklyn and Washington, D.C. with no approval from the city authorities. His proposal to build two dozen benches out of one PODS container was met with enthusiasm by HAA, but the sponsoring company wasn’t initially as gung-ho. How were viewers to appreciate their brand if it was going to be carved up? Martinez finally got to speak to an officer at the company who found the humor and simplicity in his project, and he was given the go-ahead.

Martinez’s benches will provide accommodations for the other PODS at the park. For example, visitors may sit comfortably before Lynn McCabe’s video featuring interviews with recent Hispanic, Asian or European immigrants, who each show off and explain a personal object of sentimental or cultural value. The work is a continuation of the artist’s longstanding interest in the intersection between the public and the domestic. She is also planning a swap-meet at her PODS unit in which visitors can bring a box of things they never unpacked from their last move, to be traded sight-unseen for another such box. 6 a.m. to 11 p.m. Daily. Through June 5. Discovery Green, 1500 McKinney. For information, call 713-400-7336 or visit www.discoverygreen.com. Free.
May 18-June 5, 6 a.m.-11 p.m., 2011

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Hank Hancock
Contact: Hank Hancock