conducts creative, participatory research that aims to temporarily transform public spaces and instigate dialogue about democracy, spatial justice and everyday life. The Institute’s projects use performance, conversation and unexpected interventions to investigate social and political “tiny things”. Based mostly in Boston, MA, and occasionally under the leadership of kanarinka, James Manning, Jaimes Mayhew, Forest Purnell or Nicole Siggins the group’s membership is varied and interdisciplinary.
$17.90PAGES: 42, Full Color
$3DIMENSIONS: 2" x 3"
$5MAP DIMENSIONS: 27" x 32"
2011. A temporary public art installation at UMass Amherst to re-stage the US-Mexico border fence on the Tohono O'odham reservation.
2012. The Institute and the Occupy Boston Tiny Tents Task Force held a tiny tent-making workshop at the Mobius Art Space in Cambridge, MA. The Tiny Tents Task Force "seeks to fill every city with minuscule reminders of Occupy’s continuing presence."
2011. The Institute joined with Occupy Boston in the 6th HONK! Parade to carry signs bearing two related messages. Later, the Institute installed similar signs over a Boston highway.
2011. The Institute hosted an event to discuss failed art projects, asking is there, actually, a recipe for failure? Are certain methodologies more prone to failure than others? How? What is at stake in acknowledging failure in one’s process, one’s community, or one’s career?
2010. Transgender Bathroom Dedication dedicates bathrooms at MFA Boston to Chrissy Pollis and Dean Spade, both victims of transgender hate crimes that took plate in bathrooms in Maryland and New York, respectively.
2009. The Institute for Infinitely Small Things sought happiness through the labor of digging an enormous hole in the front yard of a Cambridge family who volunteered their land for this purposelessness.
2009. The Institute and members of the MIT Origami Club held a party to make origami creations out of the 600-page economic stimulus package.
2008. The Institute relieves various ICA laborers. While they go on a paid break the Institute does their jobs. Presented in conjunction with the exhibition "The World as a Stage". Performance schedule: Thursdays - Feb 28, Mar 27, Apr 24; 6:30 - 8:30 PM at the ICA Boston.
2008. Performances at the DeCordova museum as part of the 2008 DeCordova Annual Exhibition. Also featured will be installations of Corporate Commands, Unmarked Package, The New American Dictionary, and Transferring Patriotism.
2006-8. What would the city look like if we could rename all of our public spaces, right now? The Institute invited members of the public to RENAME places in Cambridge, MA, for the 2008 publication of a new map of "The City Formerly Known as Cambridge".
2007. The Institute toted hundred packages (marked "UNMARKED PACKAGE") around Chicago sites including the South Side, Daley Plaza, Millennium Park, Little Village, Douglas Park and Hyde Park. We interviewed the public about insecurity and fear in public spaces and produced a video research report.
2006. This dictionary catalogs over 60 terms related to fear and security which have entered American English since 9/11, including new terms ("freedom fries", "islamofascist") and old terms which have been redefined ("torture").
The dictionary is available on amazon.com for $19.95.
2007. A reverse shoplifting experiment to bring American fear & insecurity to Canadian bookstores. The Institute for Infinitely Small Things deposited over 40 copies of the self-published "New American Dictionary: Security/Fear Edition" into Vancouver bookstores & educational institutions.
2005. A video guidebook that presents 57 things that someone can do for leisure, entertainment, enjoyment or relaxation in Harvard Square, but none of them involve money. Designed for public video screens above the tourist kiosk in Harvard Square.
2004 - present. Performances of corporate commands (ads in the imperative) where they occur in the urban landscape. We try to perform each command as literally as possible. There have been more than 15 performances of corporate commands in the U.S. and Canada in public and private urban spaces.
2004. Every day for 11 days, the Institute/iKatun chose to perform an instruction submitted by collaborators from around the world via the project website. 100(11) Instruction Works was part of the 7a*11d International Performance Art Festival in Toronto, Canada, October 2004.
(proposed) The Institute for Infinitely Small Things is selling its patriotism to any interested buyers. Once the sale is made, the full transfer of our patriotism to you will occur via a performance. This can only occur if both parties are fully intoxicated.
(Seeking funding) A proposal to do five public performances to research the "development" and "modernization" accompanying the rise of the tourism economy in Podgorica, Montenegro, a country on track to be part of the EU.