¨HERE WE ARE. Everybody's flag¨ is a performance of collective participation to raise a living flag in front of Baltimore City Hall, the government house of the city of Baltimore. Baltimore is one of the North American cities that proposes favorable conditions for immigrants. This project seeks to reflect on the concepts of city, citizens and citizenship from the poetic gesture of the construction of the territory through the ceremony of hoisting a flag. It is a protocol act transformed into a playful, civic and communal action.
Everybody's flag is a spatial object related to the body, an architectural object that is transformed into a place. The piece is raised from the ground during the performance in which mostly foreign students participate, and the site is open to anyone who wants to participate. There is a relationship between the forms of the object and the development of the performance in function of the symbolism of the place. The object is a transparent flag constructed by lines: strings in constant vibration and sensitive to all movement. Unlike a flag made of fabric, here the lines do not conform to a regular surface, they move independently through the activation of multiple bodies. The absence of a continuous surface makes the ceremony of folding and unfolding the flag a playful act, a process full of accidents that transform the rigidity of a solemn act into a ceremony without rules. What is usually a military ceremony here becomes a civic celebration; in an open project of overflowing; in an action impossible to contain.
¨HERE WE ARE. Everybody's flag¨ is a statement and an act of presence in the public space. This project talks about our ways of relating and cohabiting within the legislative policies associated with the idea of city and citizenship. It is a flag hoisted in a civic ceremony, whose irrepressible matter transcends any idea of border.
Baltimore City Hall. Photo: Michael O. Bourne, 06/1971