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Times Canyon… maybe it finally makes sense to _me_

May 5, 2011

Times Canyon came out well, but it was quite painful and I had much trouble. This was not a project I spent many happy hours perfecting; it was a project I spent many miserable hours procrastinating and the a few sleepless nights just sucking up and doing.

Part of this is whatever, but part of this, especially leading up to the show was trying to figure out what Times Canyon was. IS.

Is it the overlook? The viewfinders? The 3d model one could play with in Google Earth? The branding?

Again and again people told me, it’s the viewfinder. Nicole told me this; Manuel told me this. But I guess I did not communicate enough how confused I was about this or the did not communicate how essential and easy the answer was.

Anyways, I think I finally get it. The overlook is, obviously, balderdash. That we understood from the beginning. But I thought I needed it….But you don’t need any overlook. The studies, too, are nice, but essentially silly, which I knew too; they were made post-facto, making them not studies but illustrations. (Somewhat mockingly and somewhat seriously I say — in my school of design, studies are ok; illustrations are not.)

It’s the viewfinders, stupid. (Stupid being most definitely me.) It’s so simple. The point is, you can make these viewfinders and plop them wherever you can get access to. If you canoodle up to Times Square Tower and can put one up top, go for it. If you can’t, then stick one atop the TKTS steps. They’re totally expandable. The viewpoint in them, by the way, is still fixed, by the way, in the first phase.

It’s of course so easy, and so simple, but these things always are. Times Canyon IS the viewfinder, essentially, with this view. I don’t know how to troubleshoot this incident. I don’t know how I could have been so blind for so long; May is supposed to be an excellent month for me in my horoscope, and right now I am feeling like, forget all the promises — already it’s excellent — because the scales have come off my eyes with this project that had been unsettled in my brain.


This is where it gets interesting.

All the ways that Times Square and the Grand Canyon interact with each other also — also completely unimportant. Or maybe it is important in that they do build up this opposition which is not total, an ANTI relationship. I think that’s still important. The point is to transform the view of Times Square by setting it into parallel with completely different, and yet somehow parallel tourist icon places. Times Canyon would have worked on a visual level had it been all painted calming shades of green, but the naming brings it together; meanwhile the ANTI aspect drives ME and allows me to have a singular visison for the thing.

So, I haven’t thought of another place yet. Maybe the pyramids. But the point is, through naming and selecting some component to transplant, by making sure that works somehow together it, it’s possible to do N amount of these viewfinders. Times Square clas in jungle clothes, in pyramid. Well, it begins to be boring to imagine doing these (for me), but I think it’s important to understand how things can scale. Or maybe I think that good ideas scale easily and naturally (even if you don’t feel like scaling them yourself.)

And so Grand Square, this missing counterpart of the project. It’s been obsessing me; perhaps led me far astray with the memorial project. But I think the point is: Times Canyon is the Grand Square. Or maybe, the project should be flipped yet again: Grand Square: Times Canyon.

Because the point is, I see Times Square as Grand, I am calling it Grand Square, and Times Canyon is this specific way I am choosing to show that to you.

Well, I don’t know if all that will ever play out. But it sort of calms me. I think it would be nice if this Grand Square – Times Canyon relationship showed itself somehow, just gesturally, but well, it’s probably not that important.

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