Sunday, August 28, 2016

Guerrilla Public Service, an art project of Richard Ankrom installing fabricated interstate identification markers onto existing California freeway signs without permission.

Ankrom's reasoning behind for Guerrilla Public Service is much simpler: "A North panel and 5 shield were fabricated and attached to the existing overhead sign because the information was missing."

"Essentially it's a conceptual piece," Ankrom told LA Weekly in 2002 after installing his work nine months before. "It's performance and installation and public art and all these other things. I am out on a limb because I don't know where I'm going to go with this now. But this is my idea of art. Art should be incorporated more into the government's system of design and concept."

 Without any official signage to demarcate the 5 North exit, Ankrom found himself constantly missing his juncture. Ankrom as a sign painter by trade, simply took it upon himself to fix it.

"I think the worst thing they could charge me with would be trespassing and defacing property, which I believe are still misdemeanors," Ankrom continued in 2002. "[...] Even if I went to court, I'd get a public attorney, get a video-friendly judge, and videotape that. I wouldn't be able to pay the fine, so I'd have to do public service, which is sort of what I'm doing anyway.

Eight years after the original installation of Guerrilla Public Service, Caltrans, the California Department of Transportation, finally got the message: they installed a new sign in place of the old one, and simply recycled Ankrom's work.

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