The Moving Crew’s Media Wrangler Lydia Damenkonfection discusses the project
“What’s Inside?” with the Ideal X Director of Public Relations, Mariposa Flores.
MF: You have just begun the Ideal X Art Residency for the year 2010, which is a new community and arts outreach program started by the Ideal X Shipping Company as a part of their “Making the World a Smaller Place” initiative. As a member of The Moving Crew Art Collective, in which everyone operates anonymously or under an alias name, please tell us – who is The Moving Crew?
LD: The Moving Crewis, quite simply, the worlds’ largest artists collective. With our policy “You might already be a member!” we recruit numerous members from communities where we operate, schools, universities, and public events, but also through the Internet and our website. We ask all to join our large group of cultural animators under the name The Moving Crew, to come together and generate projects that are larger and more diverse than those we can produce alone. The Ideal X residency is, obviously, the largest, most global project we’ve taken on.
MF: What will you be working on during this residency?
LD: In response to the “Making the World a Smaller Place” initiative we will literally be monitoring the world of international commerce from inside the 680 cubic foot interior of intermodal containers, and making work in response to that. Since we are used to creating temporary projects that respond to the specifics of place and are sensitive to local culture, we will be moving into abandoned shipping containers. These containers have no national origin, and don't belong to anyone. Ideal X is happy to have us make use of these abandoned properties all over the world, from the high plains to the ocean shore, so we have lots of locations to choose from.
MF: What does it mean to “keep track of international commerce?”
LD: One of the benefits of the technology age is that we’ve been able to tap into wireless Internet borrowed from nearby homes and businesses. This is especially useful for all container spotters who are in residence inside containers still anchored to moving trucks. We use GPS, NPR, TSA and other reliable three letter acronyms to locate products, shipping yards, ports and container routes.
MF: What are “container spotters?”
LD: Our members are not only artists, but also cultural animators, able to network in any community, and call upon local experts for advice. In our recent project “The Official Bureau of Art Quality and Standards” we were able to locate an international team of “Art Experts” who were able to assist the general public in the complex task of viewing works of art. For this project we’ve tapped into a little known network of ‘Container Spotters.’ Much like the Audubon Society or Vintage Car Aficionados, “Container Spotters’ locate, track and identify shipping containers. The are helping us collect data, identify international logos, and track the contents of what is moving legally, and illegally, around the globe.
MF: What about the question “What’s Inside?”
LD: "What’s Inside?" is the question we are asking each of our spotters, and the general public. Since the public consumes most of what travels around us in these containers, it only makes sense that they are the authority on identifying what is, or what should be, inside. There are many ways that the public can submit their knowledge, using our project website – www.themovingcrew.org.
MF: Thank you for the opportunity to talk with you! We thank you, and The Moving Crew, for “Making the World a Smaller Place!”