This idea was born out of the fact that I, as an individual aritst living in NYC, cannot currently travel around the world (as much as I wish I could). I can, however, organize a massive social experiment where I send out groups of butterflies to willing participants who will then add their own installations to the project through digital and analog platforms. During the year, my swarms of magnetic butterflies will travel to 100 different homes and will be sheparded through cities, towns and streets by their new temporary guardians. Below is an illustration of how I envision the logistics of this epic adventure.
First, by the end of Septemeber, I will organize 4,000 of my magnetic cyanotype butterflies into ten groups of 400 butterflies each. By that time, I will have selected the 100 individuals, couples, families, groups etc., that will be my collaborators all over the world. I will pick the sequence of the travel and organize it so that the butterflies move about the same distance between each stage. This should hopefully keep the shipping cost for each participant as low as possible, while still allowing for a wide geographic distribution.
Next, I will send out ten packages all over the world. Each one will have 400 butterflies, a notebook, a how-to guide, and a medical kit for butterfly repair.
Once the butterflies arrive, the first recipients have four weeks to travel with them and install them in locations around their communities. Each participant will document their installations with digital photographs, tweets, Facebook posts etc. and also through a shared paper journal. Once the four weeks are finished, they will pack up all the supplies and be responsable for shipping the package to its next location.
The butterflies have a week of travel time built in before the next four week session begins. This process repeats for ten stages. As you can imagine, more dots fill up the map, and these blue butterflies begin to take over the world. The final round of participants will ship the butterflies back to me in New York, where I will organize a capstone gallery show with our collective images from all over the globe.