Waiting for a Break is a living, public art project by Julia Christensen for Cleveland, Ohio, that transmits live feeds of Lake Erie’s winter ice as it forms, shifts, and eventually breaks––in real time––throughout the winter of 2017-2018. A large outdoor video kiosk on Public Square will broadcast the feeds all winter long, supported by a commission from LAND Studio (as a part of LANDFORM). A solo exhibition nearby at SPACES Gallery will provide an immersive viewing of the piece in a gallery setting (as a part of the R+D Artist program).
Networked cameras on the shore of Lake Erie in Ohio will allow the public to peer into the lake’s nuanced winter activity from the land. We rarely experience the lake’s winter phenomena up close, despite its effect on cities and towns in the watershed. In Cleveland, everyone is waiting for that winter ice to break, the joyous sign that spring has finally come to the region. Ironically, reliable ice on the Great Lakes is a good thing, an indicator of a healthy climate and a healthy ecosystem. Christensen has installed cameras on South Bass and Gibralter Islands in the Sandusky Bay, and in the Maumee Bay, places on the western end of the lake that are integral to tourism, industry, and the ecosystem of the watershed.
The video kiosk on Public Square will be live from December 2017 to June 2018. The solo show of the project at SPACES will be exhibited from January to March 2018. Monitors will remain on view both in Public Square and at SPACES Gallery until the moment we are all waiting for––the breaking of the ice.