Monday, December 31, 2007

Wrapping ice

We've fallen into a routine.

Mornings at Intelligentsia for great coffee and the most current music known to humans. Today, it's "Band of Horses".

Artwork in the latte, and young, hip cafe crew.

To work by 9 AM. Create new artwork from yesterday’s frozen pour.

A break in between to warm up.

Another pour. And lately: wrapping the inventory. Here's Katie.

Yesterday Gord began cataloguing the work.

Everyone is tired, most take naps everyday. I’ve heard “the cold gets in your bones” and “heavy lifting” more than once. Our search for “Ice Trivia” landed some interesting facts about how our bodies work in extreme cold.

A University of New Hampshire study “Cold Weather Increases Risk of Dehydration” discusses the body’s efforts to keep core temperature warm, lack of thirst and reduction of bodily fluids in the cold.

“We lose a great deal of water from our bodies in the winter due to respiratory fluid loss through breathing. Our bodies also are working harder under the weight of extra clothing, and sweat evaporates quickly in cold, dry air.

Fluid deficits of 3 to 8 percent of body mass have been reported in individuals working in cold environments, and dehydration is a major problem with exercise in the cold.” For more info: Google: dehydration in cold.

Anywhere we go is an excuse to talk about anything related to the project. We need new skil saws; who is the best crew person to operate? Which interns will we work with next week? Katie, for sure. How about that new technique of freezing the pours?

Installation plans for Millennium Park; ice slab deliveries. Reply to all interns who have answered our request for resumes. Gord always wants his half hour before the crew arrives to plan for the day. His drawing books are filled with pencil sketches -- now it’s how the artwork will fit on the plates.

We walk a lot.

One of the wonderful discoveries of Chicago: the river. Not just because it’s a river, not just the grace of water rippling with the wind, but also because it leaves space. There’s an opening where you can look up and feel an expanse of sky and light. At night,it’s windy, cold and if you're warm enough, glamorous.

City life, especially downtown, is so different from what we’re used to. At night, I can always tell what time it is by the number of taxis down on the street at the crosswalk. (2 taxis: 3 AM).

If there’s water on the street, it’s above freezing. And even if there’s no snow, it’s always going to be below zero if the roads are dry. We pass DANGER FALLING ICE signs next to the buildings daily.

Museum of Modern Ice posters have begun to appear on the bus shelters. People we talk to have heard of the project. Los Angeles Times and Waterloo Courier (IowA) will have articles about Chicago & Paintings Below Zero in their travel sections January 6th.

Countdown to New Year’s. Countdown to opening. Everyone arrives in January.

Dot Coyle, our sponsor from the City of Chicago Office of Tourism visits today with Karen Ryan from Communications.

Tomorrow we get to sleep in.

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