While most of you were distracted by the red jumpsuited people trickling down Baldwin Hills, there was another equally as exciting art thing that happened on Sunday out in Pasadena. The event was Richard Jackson’s 2012 recreation of his previously performed Accidents In Abstract Painting, where a fifteen foot wide balsa wood remote controlled plane full of paint was crashed into a canvas to create art. Sounds insane? It is. But, it’s great.
The Pasadena event was a part of Pacific Standard Time’s Performance and Public Art Festival and was one of the bigger scale, attracting-an-audience-out-of-curiosity pieces. The event was caught on film by super respected cinematographer Bruce Douglas Johnson, which catches the last bit of the plane’s thirty minute joy ride to announce “Hey! Hey! I’m going to crash soon! Hey! Hey!!!”
You get to see the descent, where the plane still looks small and like it’s certainly not fifteen feet, and the eventual arrival near the ground, where it is just a few feet from people where you realize that it really is a huge ass plane. There are some moments of “Oh, God, someone is going to die, getting struck by this paint filled plane–OH GOD DON’T HIT–oh, phew. Depth perception is just off, or something.” which is what makes this slowed down video kind of fun. And, as you’ve guessed, the best part is when the plane reaches the canvas out of nowhere, exploding in paint and balsa wood chips, as if someone just put a bomb in a piñata.
It’s a pretty great little watch and captures one crazy moment in art making. The video cannot be embedded, unfortunately, but you can check it out here.