Convergence Cafe, 2008

S_Black_Converg_Cafe_web02Convergence Cafe, 2008
A contribution to Democracy in America: The National Campaign Exhibition, Park Avenue Armory, New York, NY curated by Creative Time

InCUBATE invited Material Exchange to design and build a temporary cafe to facilitate their Sunday Soup Granting Program. We had access to some materials from the Elizabeth Foundation for the Arts and Materials for the Arts and collected the rest from the streets of Manhattan and Brooklyn. The project was executed (from material acquisition to fabrication) in the space of three days.

Designing in this manner became like painting with found colors. The colors themselves retain some aspect of their previous identity, unified by the function of the created form. Each table was made from an existing table that either no longer could physically serve as a table, or declined in its owners esteem to the degree that it became garbage. Each surface is composed of the detritus of local daily life, upon which unrelated activities occurred. One investment drifts into another. One value is eclipsed by another. The same surface is valued and defaced by multiple applications.

When the exhibit concluded, some of the tables reappeared on the curb due to the impracticality of their forms, perceived in terms of their spacial and material dimensions returned to the brown soup that is the common remainder of general waste.