Here There and Everywhere: Anticipating the Art for the Future
People: Part IV   History

Jones and Roa Expedition
Ryan Roa • USA
Darren Jones • UK/Scotland

About their project, the artists write, “The Delaware and Hudson Canal was a vital part of the industrial and cultural life of the area for over a hundred years. Its inception, impact on local communities and ultimate fall provide a rich backdrop for our artistic concerns,” which is why the artists, “decided to hike the entire length of the canal in the searing heat of June 2007.”
During the remaining months of 2007, the artists put together a written draft of their journey (which will be published in 2009) and returned to various places to collect more information, check on their original findings and organize the work for an accompanying website, series of lectures and exhibitions. The artists’ aim is to piece together and document the history, route and current conditions of the canal, using a variety of media.
The canal offered them a way to meet and talk to the people in the area; and its “lost and fragmented remains offered us the familiar romance so often associated with the leftovers of man’s eternal progress.” In this way, the artists feel that they were able to turn the canal’s extraordinary history into a contemporary journey, which they can bring “into the wider public realm.” The artists also are currently working on another “coast to coast expedition from Helmsdale on Scotland’s Eastern Seaboard to The Isle of Skye on the Western Atlantic Coast.” And, finally, “we hope that the Jones and Roa Expedition and subsequent endeavors highlight the very real and practical ways that contemporary art practitioners can interact with the every day reality of life. We aim to show that art can be relevant and interesting to a wide variety of people regardless of their interest in art. We believe that if art can be based in the genuine story of our communities and shared histories then perhaps the public may find a use and a passion for what art can be.”

Exhibition Venues:
Wayne County Historical Society • Honesdale, Pennsylvania, USA
With a satellite exhibition at the Goshen County Government Building
April 3, 2009—January 2010
The Wayne County Historical Society was incorporated in 1922. The purpose and objectives of the Society are to collect and preserve the historical records of the people, places and events in Wayne County; maintain a research library and museum of relics, books, maps, paintings and other articles that further public interest in the history of Wayne County; make every effort to preserve and restore historical buildings, landmarks, and other sites; and educate people about the history of the area and its historic value.

The Neversink Valley Area Museum • Cuddebackville, New York, USA
April 2007—October 2008