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Points of Departure 2018

Points of Departure highlights the transient nature of a busy plaza at the intersection of Masonic Ave. and Geary Blvd. in San Francisco, giving material form to what is usually only in the minds of individuals: the places they are headed, the places they were born, and the places they would like to one day visit. The project, for the San Francisco Arts Commission, consists of three sculptural signposts arrayed in the plaza—arrows pointing to destinations near and far, displaying place names and distances given in miles and kilometers.

The place names were selected from responses to a week-long survey conducted on the site in the spring of 2015. I asked people passing through the plaza or waiting for buses there three questions: Where are you going right now?; Where were you born, and when?; and Where do you want to go that you have never been? Each post corresponds to one of these questions and displays multiple answers to that question. Working with translations of the survey questions and native speakers I was able to include responses in Chinese, Russian, Spanish and Tagalog. The artwork suggests an expanded sense of community and place, having as much to do with the site, as it does with movement, memory, and imagination.

Survey responses were collected by me with help from Veronica Graham, Chloe Kwiatkowski, Ling Meng, Willy Nicolas, Juan Santiago, Julianne Vinh, and Jingtao Zhang. Translations were done by Sergio De La Torre, Larissa Lavryonova, Lauren Huang, Juan Santiago, and Duoduo Xu. Gizmo Art Production Inc. fabricated and installed the project.
Points of Departure

Post 1: Where are you going right now?; Painted aluminum;
13'-4" x 6'-6" dia.
Points of Departure

Post 1 (detail)
Points of Departure

Post 1 (detail); the question associated with each sign is engraved into the side of the post.
Points of Departure

Post 2: When and where were you born?; painted aluminum;
16'-2" x 7'-6" dia.
Points of Departure

Post 2 (detail)
Points of Departure

Post 3: Where do you want to go that you have never been?;
painted aluminum; 14'-10" x 7'-6" dia.
Points of Departure

Post 3 (detail)