@ WORK is a platform that invites workers to share their thoughts about their work, their world and their dreams for the future. The project takes on multiple forms of portraiture, including fourteen life size portraits of the workers on canvas banners, documentary films, and street posters which will be distributed across the city. Beloff will be painting a large-scale wall mural, a parade of workers at the Electrical Workers Training Center (IBEW Local #3) in New York City. Artists Zoe Beloff and Eric Muzzy saw themselves as facilitators. Their first step was to interview each worker, beginning the conversation with the words, “we are here for you…” Subsequently, they built the interviews into short films, both serious and playful, that situated the subject in place and time with a song of their choosing that energized them.
Beloff and Muzzy learned a lot in the process of interviewing an incredibly diverse group of workers, including that if it were not for the contribution of immigrant women, cities would rapidly grind to a halt. @ WORK is also inspired by photographs of workers by Walker Evans and Alan Sekula, painted murals by Ben Shahn, and the vernacular style of fairground banners, even as the project takes these inspirations into the twenty first century.
Please join the artists and workers in the gallery from 5-6:30pm on August 23rd to celebrate and learn more about the project.