A video of this very cool project from 1994 recently surfaced on the web. Artist Mark Tribe explains:
Nina Katchadourian, Steven Matheson and Mark Tribe were invited to work collaboratively on a site-specific project at Southwestern College in Chula Vista, California for inSite ’94, a binational art exhibition that takes place at various locations throughout San Diego and Tijuana.
Southwestern College is surrounded by a moat-like ring of parking lots. You can’t enter the campus without crossing a sea of concrete. Each day, Southwestern’s 3,477 parking spaces fill and empty several times with the cars of the students, faculty and staff who commute to Southwestern from all over the San Diego and Tijuana area.
On August 31, 1994 from 6am to noon, a team of 50 professional and volunteer parking attendants directed the arriving cars to predetermined lots according to car color. Each of the fourteen lots was filled with cars of a different color: dark blue, blue, light metallic blue, silver & gray, black, beige, brown, metallic raspberry, yellow, electric blue, white, aqua, green and red.
Artist Jorge Mañes turned a parking deck into a tennis court as part of a project for the Royal College of Art in London.
“Park, Set and Match” is Jorge’s misreading of London’s supermarket parking systems, transforming them into his own tennis tournament. These huge spaces, legally private property, are monitored by CCTV cameras and security guards, and offered for free to the clients to make shopping easier. To get into the game you need only buy some water and fruit. This will allow you to legally occupy the parking space for 2 hours. You can then set up your tennis match, which will be “televised” by the CCTV cameras, a public source recording allowing players to obtain a copy of their match through the Creative Commons Act.
Artist Michael Rakowitz came up with a clever way to camp out on an urban street, make your tent look like it’s a covered car!
(P)LOT questions the occupation and dedication of public space and encourages reconsiderations of “legitimate” participation in city life. Contrary to the common procedure of using municipal parking spaces as storage surfaces for vehicles, (P)LOT proposes the rental of these parcels of land for alternative purposes. The acquisition of municipal permits and simple payment of parking meters could enable citizens to, for example, establish temporary encampments or use the leased ground for different kinds of activities, such as temporary gardens, outdoor dining, game playing, etc. A first initiative for this re-dedication is realized through the conversion of ordinary car covers to portable tents for use as living units or leisure spaces. Ranging from a common sedan to a luxurious Porsche or Lexus, the tents enable a broadcast of desire within the marginalized space of need.