Here’s Why there Are Searchlight Beams in the Borderland Sky
An interactive public art installation caught my eye on Saturday while enjoying a beautiful evening out in downtown El Paso. While walking the city streets that evening, I noticed searchlight beams in the sky. I knew that the circus was in town and that sometimes searchlight beams are used for that, but I did notice that there were quite a few roaming the borderland sky. It turns out that it's part of this art installation that is not only taking place in El Paso, but it also connects our sister-city Juarez.
The interactive public art installation is by Mexican-born artist Rafael Lorenzo-Hemmer and is designed to interconnect Juarez and El Paso. According to the website bordertuner.net, the installation involves three interactive stations on each side of the border using powerful searchlight beams using a small dial wheel. When lights from any two stations are directed at each other, microphones and speakers automatically switch-on to allow participants to talk with one another, creating cross-border conversations. The project is curated by Kerry Doyle and León de la Rosa, with programming direction by Edgar Picazo. While a diverse schedule of invited guests will open the installation each evening, everybody is welcome to participate for free.
The grand inauguration kicks off on November 13th at 6 P.M. and runs through November 24th. In El Paso, the installation is at Bowie High School and in Juarez it's at the Parque Chamizal. Events include karaoke, poetry and essay readings with open forums and community tents. Make plans to attend the grand inauguration and the various events happening. You can check out the events by clicking here. Check out the great photos by photographer Mariana Yañez below and make plans to be part of this great art performance that connects our communities!