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Cops Dismantle Portion of Tampa Airport Art Installation

Published April 25, 2011

Cops Dismantle Portion of Tampa Airport Art Installation

Tampa Airport NCECA Causeway Commotion: Waiting for my flight back to Providence late Monday I made an effort to find the two artist exhibition in the Tampa International Airport on the Marriott causeway. I arrived there to find a Florida family playing with one of Holly Hanessian installations screaming, ”What does it mean, what is this crap!??!”. I circled the exhibit, by the time I came back the father had pulled the top off of the test tube and was smelling the pills. The ex-anthropologist in me took over for a second to watch this interaction with the art. Before I could ask them If they should be taking things apart the man’s wife pulled out one of the tablets, bit it in half and swallowed it, repeating that it might be aspirin. This is when I got the camera out, cause this was something I thought Holly might want to see for herself. As soon as I snapped some photos, the husband stared at me, back at his wife, and then yelled out that these pill s could endanger kids, somebody needs to call 911. Nobody mentioned to the cop that she had ingested a pill. 1 cop came, then 2, then 3, then an airport security administrator. The shared derogatory comments on the artwork, decided it was setting a bad example, and reinforced that this was, indeed, not art. They put the pills from all the installations into evidence bags. They shared more derogatory comments about the art and artist, then they split. Holly I wish you could have witnessed this ”seemingly chance event” as you described in your artist statement. I made a formal complaint that the installation should be restored. Here’s to clay causing a commotion on the causeway.