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Tim Barlow 

Erupt Festival, Taupo

May 16-19 2012

Can you make The Public Fountain erupt? How many people will it take to get it going?

The Taupo region is the fountainhead of water for the North Island, where water bubbles from the ground as the original source for rivers, power supply and hydration. Tim Barlow’s The Public Fountain is a playful device for envisioning the future for water use and power generation in the clean energy region of Taupo.

During the Erupt festival, the fountain will be constructed in the heart of the Taupo shopping centre. Come to Taupo and try your prowess to get it to ‘font.’ There will be an accompanying public forum, Stories of water and power. Come along to hear a diverse range of interest groups and the Taupo public in collaborative spirit. Share the diverse viewpoints, stories (fictional and documentary), as well as artistic visions for the future of water and heat based power generation.

Providing its own comment on the use of public space for community gathering, The Public Fountain will utilise a public fountain as a civic focal point for bringing together human creativity and discussion around water resources, ownership and public space. People-powered the fountain will require the energy of the local community to keep in operation.

See the Erupt online programme for the location and times of the public forum Stories of water and power.

This project is part of Letting Space's Community Service series which works across festival platforms to create artwork that is principally about people rather than things, to enable social change. It is joined at the Erupt Festival at the same time by another Community Service series work D.A.N.C.E Art Club's D.A.N.C.E FM.

 Tim Barlow is a Wellington artist with an MFA from Massey University Wellington 2011. He has extensive experience nationally and internationally in film and television art departments, and specialises in crossing boundaries of film production and art production. He has worked on collaborative projects with community and film based organisations. Commissioned projects include Manawatu Art Gallery, MONZ, Artspace (Auckland), Dowse Museum, Wellington Activity Centre, Vincents Art Workshop and many film production departments.

Tim’s previous works include The Still (1994), where underneath Dunedin’s Octagon he tapped into an underground stream to feed a mad array of fountains, stills and purifying devices.