Her Majesty's Raft, C. Bernadette Able [a collaboration with Hannah B Harris]
11’ x26’ x 12’ + 6 month durational engagement | paddlewheels made of street signs, lumber from construction dumpsters, discarded boat wrap, plywood, discarded dock foam, plywood, two bicycles, rain barrel, sleeping bags,, ropes, pennies, net, inflatable dinghy, life vests, kerosene lamp, cook stove, 35 horsepower outboard motor, canvas, vinyl, paper, plywood, reclaimed wood, metal, rope, plastic and dock foam, reverse osmosis water filter, a small garden, clothes, bicycles, muskrat, a rat snake, two wolf spiders and their babies, hundreds of dragonflies, leather, cotton, mesh, other things for living on a river. | Mississippi and St Croix Rivers: Bayport, MN to St Charles, MO | 2008
This collaborative project traveled over 600 miles, acting as a confluence of public and private space that explored ideas of freedom, speed, and human relationship with natural resources. We engaged scores of people along the river including biologists for the Iowa and Illinois departments of Natural Resources. The journey became a boundary object through which conversations about the changing landscape, migration, and climate could cross identity lines. The vessel itself became a frame through with we could observe and understand the ecosystems of the river.