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Swoon’s Musical Architecture for New Orleans


THE CREATORS: This project was launched by the New Orleans Airlift, a multi-disciplinary arts organisation founded in 2007 by artist and curator Delaney Martin and musician and DJ Jay Pennington. The Airlift aims to create and facilitate innovative artistic opportunities for New Orleans-based artists, locally and around the globe.


THE CONCEPT: The aim is to create a unique musical house in the salvaged remains of a Creole cottage. Globally renowned, Brooklyn-based artist Swoon has designed a permanent, interactive sculpture known as ‘the Dithyrambalina’, a house with instruments built into the walls and floorboards, enabling it to be ‘played’ by both visitors and musicians. However, before the house could be built, the instruments needed to be created and tested.


To this end, the group decided to launch a temporary installation in the city called The Music Box, which would hold prototypes of instruments for the final house. It was this project that they launched on Kickstarter with a goal of $12,000.


THE RESULTS: By deadline, the project had raised $23,977 through 357 backers. The Music Box opened in New Orleans in


autumn 2011, and the aim is to now build the Dithyrambalina.


DELANEY MARTIN SAYS: “Kickstarter was less constrained than a traditional grant that has activity periods, final reports and complicated finances… and no-one could have predicted that Kickstarter would also become an important PR tool."


tive work, and increase in desirability with the size of the pledge.


Once a deadline has passed, it’s ar- chived on the site, the money is collect- ed and successful creators get on with bringing the project to life. The company is clear it’s not responsible for ensuring crea- tors fulfil their promise, however, so much support comes from the creators’ family, friends and community that they have a strong incentive not to let anyone down – so to date this hasn’t been a problem. Kazmark says Kickstarter is so intrin-


sically reliant on word of mouth that the company doesn’t do much marketing


www.leisurehandbook.com


beyond the occasional event and some press interviews. It does, however, have strategic partnerships with over 70 crea- tive organisations – ranging from YouTube to Robert Redford’s Sundance Institute – all of which have ‘curated pages’ on the site showcasing projects they support.


GLOBAL ROLLOUT Since its modest start, the company has captured the imagination of the public, with US$2m now being pledged on the site each week and the start of international expansion underway with the launch of Kickstarter in London in 2013.


Successful projects underway in the UK include Tribesports, the world’s first community-powered sportswear range, which has been developed by a 200,000-strong sports collective. The group is aiming to offer savings of up to 40per cent on sportswear by selling direct to customers and is using its Kickstarter funds to set up. The project was 398 per cent funded at £120k when it closed. l


From Leisure Management Issue 1 2012, p46


READ MORE ONLINE CLICK HERE LEISURE HANDBOOK 2014 27


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