Many believe art is more engaging and impactful when people can intermingle with it, so it’s not unusual for artists to build interactive sculptures or installations that pull in the viewer to experience the created piece. Collective Magpie takes it a bit further, drawing from the audience to participate in a piece’s construction.
In last week’s San Diego CityBeat cover story, arts editor (and former Culture Report captain) Kinsee Morlan interviewed MR Barnadas and Tae Hwang of Magpie Collective, who build art installations that require audience members to assist in its making.
Morlan writes, “Barnadas and Tae Hwang consider themselves just two-thirds of Collective Magpie. The last third of the collaborative-art project is the participant.”
The duo, who are the only two people to be accepted into UC San Diego’s MFA program as a collective and not an individual in the university’s history, focus on making site-specific work that is also audience-specific. They research and carefully plan a piece showing in a specific location, composing an experience in art creation for them as well as themselves.
For the La Jolla Playhouse’ Without Walls Festival in October, they had festival-goers construct a wall made up of hundreds of paper birds.
“What was really fascinating about this project was how interested people were in doing everything and participating in every part of the process,” Barnadas told CityBeat.