Untitled ([construction of good])

November 29 2012 - November 20 2013
Bridge Tender House at The Wolfsonian-FIU, 1001 Washington Avenue, Miami Beach, FL

Untitled ([construction of good]) is a site-specific installation by Miami-based artist Bhakti Baxter on view in The Wolfsonian Bridge Tender House from November 29, 2012.The Bridge Tender House is one of two stainless-steel hexagonal structures in the Art Deco style that sat at the ends of the Northwest 27th Avenue Bridge in Miami after its 1938–39 expansion. It was saved from demolition in the late 1980s when the bridge again was rebuilt.In Untitled ([construction of good]), artist Bhakti Baxter revives a statement made by H. A. Wortham, regional director of the Public Works Administration, who in September 1939 dedicated the newly inaugurated bridge “to the construction of good for mankind.” This simple phrasing once served to convert an act of labor (i.e. construction) and a product of labor (i.e. a bridge) into philosophical and moral precepts. The structure itself now stands as a monument to that moment in time when good design and public works were equated with the general welfare of a people, a society, and a nation itself.