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Friends of the Orphan Signs

Trade Winds Revival: Stopping and Staying
Posted on: August 6, 2012

Fris of the Orphan Signs holds a lease to use the three orphan signs that grace the barren lot that is the former site of the Trade Winds Motor Hotel at San Mateo and Central in Albuquerque. Since the fall of 2010, FOS team members have posted text messages submitted by the public in response to a number posted on the largest sign. With the help of Albuquerque’s Sprout micro-granting initiative, FOS has recently rehabilitated a second sign on this site, posting images submitted through Facebook. FOS is planning a night of video projections onto the wall of the Octopus Carwash at the western edge of the lot to celebrate the spirit of travel and the open road as embodied by historic Route 66 and The Trade Winds Motor Hotel. Videos with themes of lingering, transition, travel, or stopping and staying will be chosen for projection on four sections of the car wash’s wall. Audio for each of the videos will be transmitted by four different low-powered transmitters so that people can park their cars in the empty lot, watch the videos, and listen to soundtracks by turning into four different stations, deping on which they want to hear.

We would use the grant to rent generators, promote the event, purchase and rent projectors, and pay honorariums to the artists. If feasible, we’d also like to invite food trucks to park during our event, which may require permits and other fees.

Corresponding to the ISEA 2012 conference coming to Albuquerque in September 2012, Fris of the Orphan Signs plans to hold this event on the night of Sunday, September 23, 2012.

In the 1960’s, the tantalizing Trade Winds Motor Hotel graced what is now a wide expanse of dirt littered with broken glass, overturned shopping carts, and a huge, dilapidated sign. Between the Octopus car wash and Pep Boys Auto Supply shop on Central Avenue, this place would have been, in the 70’s, a bustling crossroads of activity. By putting up poetry and artwork submitted by the community and now holding this interactive event we hope to bring life back to this empty lot and invite the community to reclaim it as a space to come together and celebrate.