Bik Van der Pol
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1440 minutes towards the development of a site
Project developed for One Day Sculpture in collaboration with students of Elam School of Fine Arts.

Free speech is again under pressure worldwide especially since 9/11, giving governments the ability to transcend the rule of law in the name of the public good. The way this situation has played out in New Zealand is highlighted by the Electoral Finance Bill, which having passed into law in 2007, has just recently been repealed by the current National government. Under this law, individuals or groups of New Zealanders faced restrictions on what they could say for or against a political party, and enforced fiscal restrictions on each political campaign. Critics called this bill an attack on free speech. At the time, Justice Minister Annette King dismissed these claims stating it only restricted speech that is paid for, not free speech.

Contradictions abound within the all pervasive, present state of capitalism, which in itself is conversely under threat. Where is the line between a voice that is free and one that is censored? Is there a state of anticipation for much needed action, or have we reached a too-exhausted state for action to have agency? Could consciousness be re-engaged by meditating on the workings of time?
1440 minutes towards the development of a site
Activating a site in a state of waiting and anticipation, Bik Van der Pol tap the social and political histories of Albert Park in Auckland, focusing on the use of this city park as a place for raising awareness. Adjacent to the University of Auckland, Albert Park has often staged the radical gestures of the student community, centralised around the platform of the band rotunda. In particular this place was celebrated as a free zone in 1970. Bik Van der Pol with the student community retraced this proposition to build a site that is suggestive of a free space, outside the complex feeding of capitalist co-option and manipulated thought, by employing the construct of time. Time itself was used as a material to sculpt a site that posits the potential for action to take effect and re-engage consciousness. After all a day is a proposition and a speculation.

1440 minutes towards the development of a site consists of a digital clock counting down from 1440 minutes to zero, a publication made in collaboration with the students and designer Warren Olds, and a 24 hour-long public performance in Albert Park with the participation of students and public.