Drawing the Plastic Pilgrimage II

I’ve been revising the shrine proposals, especially the 4th and 5th one. I think the idea of the 4th shrine to show Macy’s ‘skeletons in the closet’ is suitable to explore the hanging spatial typology. I’ve looked back at the parade preparation process as well and this state of purgatory for the 4th shrine is in line with the idea of revealing what’s kept under wraps in storage. The panels would have three ways of unfolding; opening like a clam (a 90/180 deg foldout), moving vertically and horizontally to get panels that are parallel to each other.

4b1 4aI also realised that I lost the quirkiness of having the characters of the parade and am trying to reintroduce back parts of them in the shrines (I want to go a bit crazy with this; it would bring a lot of richness to the architecture). For this 4th one, I think what is significant could be the display of old balloons that are no longer in the parade (hence why the balloons are from the 1950s) . The scale of this shrine has been enlarged to sort of mimic the skyscrapers on 6th Avenue but in balloon form. I think this could be potentially quite interesting to play with, having the pilgrims come in contact with the beasts they adore from the parade.



The 5th shrine is still in progress but the main idea is to have the pilgrims experiencing the ‘eternal’ flight like Snoopy has as the immortal balloon. This would be very big in size and could possibly occupy the whole courtyard front of Herald Square. I am thinking maybe pilgrims could occupy a floating component and have a coffee amidst the skyscrapers on 6th Avenue; could function as a sky bar/cafe. Pilgrims would end the journey here by receiving the ‘elixir of life’ from the bar.

I will be working on improving all the 5 shrines for Tuesday and also the portfolio storyboard. For now this is the breakdown I have for the portfolio:


Opening Prologue + Poster Image (something that sums up the premise project, yet to be done)

(I) Macy’s Paradise of Consumption  – The Purveyor of Immortality

  • Video/ News clips
  • Beauty Ads
  • Greater Macy’s Poster

(II) The Eternal Recurrence – The Ghost in the Machine

  • Parade Timeline (Historical)
  • Parade Elements + Cyclical Timeline
  • Augmented Liturgical Calendar

(III) The Staged Pilgrimage – The Five Pillars of the Eternal Parade

  • The Development of a Cult Audience (Armies of Pleasure)
  • Holy Thanksgiving Day (Site Analysis for the project)
  • Pillar 1: The Can
  • Pillar 2: The Helium Shop
  • Pillar 3: The Bingo Hall
  • Pillar 4: The Skeleton Closet
  • Pillar 5: The Sky Bar

Epilogue (Project Conclusion that highlights Manhattan as the Vitrine, addressing Museum of the Present)

One thought on “Drawing the Plastic Pilgrimage II

  1. I like the new drawings and the idea of reintroducing the old, now obsolete balloons into the 4th shrine to start a discussion about where balloons are kept once they are no longer in use. Is this where you introduce a discussion of plastic dying/ the plastic coffins and your discussion with the polymer scientist at the V&A?
    I would be interested in seeing how you make this building scale object move to open and reveal the ‘skeletons in the closet.’ There are some good details of tracks, pulleys, motors and jacks that could help you figure out how to detail this in the Theatre Engineering and Stage Machinery book – it would be great to see how these theatrical details are applied to the city scale.
    It would be nice to return to the balloons to make the project come a full circle in terms of your initial discussion of the parade and the humour associated with it so I’m interested to see how you develop the 5th shrine to be a sort of scaled up mad hatters tea party – it could be a way to make us question the scale at which we inhabit the city – the balloons provide a macro-scale of inhabitation (similar to your reading of manhattan as a vitrine for the parade to be exhibited within).
    Im sure you’ve already looked at this book but it might be good to look at Spectacle by the Rockwell Group again: http://www.rockwellgroup.com/publications/publications-spectacle since the way they capture the large scale event and its architecture might be helpful in thinking of how you want to capture your project through a few final images that show the relationship of the shrines and the parade as two forms of museum across different time scales could be interesting.
    I think rather than a table of contents or storyboard, in your case it might be more useful to put together a sort of map of how all the disparate elements you have created over the course of this year: models, images, drawings, research, interviews, readings, documents, videos, experiments, theories, quotes, etc. all sit together within the project. It would be a useful drawing/ document to navigate quite a complex body of work and a nice way for us to orient ourselves within the project. I think it would help us have a good discussion on Tuesday to figure out the best way to structure the material and help you determine what still needs to be done. You can use the table of contents/ order above as the beginning to structure this and start to think about all the other material you have and where this would be placed within it, and in what order/ sequence. Hope that this helps and looking forward to seeing all 5 shrines and how they together tell the story of the balloons, parade and the cycle of death, resurrection and immortality on Tuesday!

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