"Columbus never..."


Janet Zweig

Spring–Winter 2013

88 E. Broad Street
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Zweig's project is a generative sentence on a blank wall behind Key Bank developed through collaboration between the artist and the people of Columbus. The first words were written by the artist—"Columbus never came here, but..."— and were revealed over the course of six weeks. Additions to the sentence are installed phraseby-phrase at approximately two-week intervals. By the project's end, the wall will be covered with text written by the public.

Generative text can tap into an unconscious that often discovers hidden, insightful, poetic, and sometimes humorous truths. The new words are chosen by Zweig and curators from online submissions by people who live, work, or visit Columbus. The choices depend on words that create the possibility of one meaning that can shift with the addition of subsequent words. The goal is to change the meaning of the sentence (or sentences) each time a new section is added, in an attempt ultimately to capture the soul of Columbus as described by its residents. Columbus' statement about itself will be writ large over the course of the year. Since the sentence is gradually generative, what Columbus has to say about itself collectively won't be known until early 2013.


With the sentence writ large on the KeyBank wall as a backdrop, youth from Transit Arts will come to the site the first Tuesday and third Saturday of each month at noon to respond to the text installed at that time. They will respond by speaking or performing their own additions to the sentence on the wall and by inviting others to do the same. Participants will be recorded, and the videos will be posted on YouTube and the Finding Time website. At year's end, they will be edited together to create a time-lapse video of the words as they appear on the wall and responses to them by multiple responses to them by multiple Columbus voices.


Click on the image below to submit a phrase of 3-5 words that provides the next section of the sentence.




Orange Barrel Media, Jackie Calderone & Transit Arts, Oasis Parking, Schottenstein Property Group, KeyBank, Central Community House, Jaynie Grothe, and Evan Dawson
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"Columbus never..." Phase 11 Image by Jaynie Grothe
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