Goodbye, CulverLand

It took three days to remove “CulverLand.” But you can watch it disappear here in less than four minutes.

The 1,600-square foot mural was de-installed primarily with water sprayed from a high pressure power washer.  A soy-based paint remover was applied to some parts of the artwork, but no solvents of any kind were employed in its removal.

Power washing required nearly 600 gallons of water.  Most of the resulting waste-water was pumped up by hand or vacuum, and carted off in 18-gallons bins for disposal off-site.  This was done in order to keep any wastewater from entering the nearby storm drains, which empty into the ocean.

While some of the paints easily came off the pavement, others required an inch-by-inch spraying and scrubbing.  We expect the remaining residue to fade within the next month or two.

It was an incredibly challenging and exhausting project to clean the site as much as we did, but it was also very encouraging, as people walked by all day long for the three days we were there and told us how much they enjoyed playing the game, and how sad they were to see it go.  Many claimed it should’ve been made permanent.  This was great to hear, but “CulverLand” was always conceived of as a temporary artwork.  It was designed with an end date.  It was meant to exist for a moment in time, and then be washed away.

For us, the whole idea of temporary art is to create something that people MUST enjoy at a certain place and time.  This is part of what gives it value.  Miss it, and you’ll never see it again.  Enjoy it while it’s there, and let the memories live forever.

That said, we personally wouldn’t have minded a few more weeks of “CulverLand.”  And if there are any desires to see it re-installed or included as part of the upcoming redevelopment of this part of Culver City, we’d love to help bring it back.   We enjoyed playing it, and we REALLY enjoyed seeing other people play it.

Thank you so much to everyone who took a little time to be part of “CulverLand.”  And thank you to Culver City, “The Heart of Screenland,” for helping us find “The Heart of CulverLand.”

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The End is Near

We are planning to start removal of “CulverLand” on Wednesday, November 3.  So if you want to play the game, hurry on down there before Wednesday!

Thanks to everyone who has played so far!

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Watch them play “CulverLand”

Marisa from creativethursday.com and Sean from Hogan’s Point joined John, Kim, and Ian Derevlany for a game of “CulverLand” last Friday (Oct. 15).  And then… the cops came.

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CulverLand Now Open!

So come on down and play it already!

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First heat, then rain, now Zohan

A week of record-setting heat and another week of record-setting rain were simply not enough afflictions for our Job-like struggle to install “CulverLand.”  The game still had to contend with one more disaster before it’s opening.

An Adam Sandler movie.

Yes, that’s right.  We woke up Thursday morning to find Mr. Happy Madison himself was making a movie in Culver City.  Which is great.  But did he have to do it on the same EXACT day, and the same EXACT spot, where we were trying to finish “CulverLand?

Dozens of film crew trucks park by (and occasionally drive over) CulverLand

We arrived at the game site on Thursday to do our final touch-ups on the artwork before the beginning of IndieCade.  We found a small army of film production trucks suddenly parking by and driving over our game.  There’s pretty much nothing that will tear up the temporary paint of “CulverLand” more efficiently than the tires of a 10-ton grip truck.  There were at least a dozen or more of these trucks there, as well as larger vehicles.

Fortunately, the crew was mostly cooperative once we explained what was going on.  And they seemed to make an effort at avoiding any unintended demolition.  And we only had to paint over about half a dozen deep tire marks.  It just made everything THAT more difficult.

Yes, “Culver City” is the home to several movies studios and is nicknamed “The Heart of Screenland.” So it’s not unexpected to have a few film crews around town.  But did they really have to set up all their gear on this day, and at this time, right next to and on top of our repeatedly abused artwork and game?

The sudden appearance of this major production did not make things any easier for all the IndieCade folks trying to set up for this weekend’s festival in the nearby lot.  On the plus side, the art decorators went to town on the Culver Hotel.  Those are fake flowers in the bushes, by the way.  Those bushes don’t grow flowers.

Set decorators dress up the "Culver Hotel" for the upcoming Adam Sandler movie "Jack and Jill"

The new movie is apparently called “Jack and Jill,” in which Adam Sandler plays both a man AND a woman, according to one of the film crew members.  We didn’t stick around to see which version of him  (“Jack” or “Jill”) was actually in these scenes at the Culver Hotel.

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CulverLand Repairs begin today

Rain has finally stopped falling on CulverLand.

The rain has finally ended.

Rain has been falling on “CulverLand” almost since the moment we finished painting it.  The average rainfall for the entire month of October in Los Angeles is usually less than half an inch.  We got more than that on Wednesday alone (.62 inches fell at nearby LAX on Wednesday — a new record, according to wunderground.com).

The downpours have hammered the artwork, which was designed to be temporary and water-soluble.  It would’ve been a great plan… had it not rained.  But it did rain.  For nearly five days.

Good news is: repairs begin today.  Hopefully the paint will be dry by this evening, and the game will be ready and playable before the IndieCade Festival opens tomorrow, Friday, October 8.

Apologies to everyone in Culver City who has had to walk around the caution tape and traffic cones we used to protect the art (and any passersby) during the rainfall.  They should be gone soon.

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Hello, Cruel World

Saturday morning, 9:30 a.m.  I was going to finally remove the traffic cones and caution tape that had been surrounding the artwork for the past four days (and slightly disrupting pedestrian traffic on the walkway).  I was also going to take the first official pictures of the finished artwork.

However, I was only there for a few minutes when it started to downpour.  Fifteen minutes of fairly heavy rain.  Strangely enough, it was not raining at my house in Culver City, about one mile West of the artwork.  Apparently, it only rained this hard, and for this long, right in downtown Culver City, just above the artwork.  I’d felt like I’d painted a giant bullseye on the ground for every raincloud around to target.

Literally, as I was about to remove the cones and open “CulverLand” to the world, it almost got destroyed by rain.  What are the chances of that happening here in Southern California, where it almost never rains?

Normally, rain like this wouldn’t be a big problem.  But, as I explained in the previous post, much of this “temporary” artwork is painted with “temporary” paint.  This paint is purposefully designed to be removed using water only (no solvents or chemicals required).  It’s a great concept.  Unless… of course… it rains.  Which it did on Saturday morning.

At the time of the downpour, I thought everything was ruined.  The red paint ran all over the place, bleeding and streaking across the other colors.  Giant puddles of red obscured much of the type my wife Kim had painstakingly painted on.  I thought we were doomed.

After the weather cleared, however, it was only slightly messed up.  We’ll be watching the weather, and will probably try to patch things up before Indiecade begins on Oct. 8.

Meanwhile… the traffic cones are still up there, making sure no one walks on it while the surface is still wet.

And five days after we started painting this, we are still not done.  Ugh!

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CulverLand – Finished

Here are some pictures as we finally finished installing “CulverLand” late in the afternoon on Friday, October 1.   We were completely hot and exhausted at the time, so we didn’t get the best photos.  We’d spent four days painting out in the sun, with temperatures reaching 100+.  Most of the time it was difficult to see what we were doing with all the sweat dripping in our eyes.  And then there were all the problems with the paint… which we think we’d solved.

Since this is a “temporary artwork,” that is due to be removed in a month, we tried using “temporary” paint — a special kind of paint that fades naturally and is easy to remove.  It turned out to be a little TOO easy to remove, as some of the colors had an aversion to actually sticking to the pavement (it’s also one of the reasons there is no “Day 3” video — we were just TOO frustrated on that day to make a decent video).  This is also why the installation took four days, instead of the original two we had planned on.

However, we eventually fixed the paint problems, and everything looked great.  And it was finally done!  Off to Kay N Daves, just down the block, for the best margaritas around.

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CulverLand Day 4

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CulverLand – Day 2

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