In the shadow of Brach's, twenty-eight massive wooden posts stand in an orderly rectangular configuration. Painted creosote black, the east and west faces of the posts are inscribed with the job titles of members of the Austin community. The north and south sides are inscribed with descriptive words these workers use to explain their job experience. The north contains negative descriptions and the south contains positive words. The skeletal configuration of the blackened posts mirrors the massive, unoccupied Brach's factory structure across the street. Collectively, the posts can be seen to represent an animal pen or penitentiary, a vanishing yet habitable space, a community or a grave, marking the almost complete death of industrial Chicago.
BJ Krivanek (Principal in Charge), Niles Maxwell (editor), residents of the Austin neighborhood (writers)
C&L Construction (installer); Westside Ministers Alliance, South Austin Coalition, Community Council (community partners)
"What appears as a simple art work project on a vacant lot booms the powerful meaning of words in volumes. This very motivational installation will be heard loud and clear to anyone taking the time to read the messages. This is a statement of how things can change for those who are willing and ready. The graphic element of the wooden posts with their play of light and shadow give this work a living character as the sun rises and sets in this neighborhood of change."