Competitive Winter Picnic
A gathering where teams of participants compete in frigid temperatures to present themselves as “having the most fun.” This work takes the models of organizational social practice found in [Waiting for the Man] and flips them upside down. Instead of highlighting the beneficial characteristics of the setting, Competitive Winter Picnic actively works against the environment. A cold, dreary park in the middle of winter hardly evokes “fun.” It is an anti-setting installation, where intention and creative energy overcome the stark realities of frigid weather. Additionally, it presents a family-friendly platform for engaging in absurdist art practice, due to the nature of the event and the inherently playful chemistry of competition.
Under rubrics cribbed from pageants and sport, Competitive Winter Picnic subverts performative, ostentatious spectacle. The organizational model of competition comes with a pre-packaged structure and set of assumptions whose primary use is engaging participants. By predicating the success and failure of “fun” along explicit, graded elements, the paradox of competitive enjoyment is rendered in all its pantomime glory.
Each picnic table operates as an independent zone of festivity. They are autonomous creative spaces brought together by the scaffolding of Krawczuk’s overarching themes: providing accessible venues for emerging artists, interactive performances that blend the roles of performer and participant, and cultivating a carnival-esque atmosphere of creative inclusion.
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