Everything is Better Now (installation)

Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, San Francisco as part of Bay Area Now 5, July-Nov 2008
Everythign is Better Now, Installation: Yerba Buena Center for the Arts San Francisco
digital video, foam core mounted charts and signs, items used from the Yerba Buena Center: stanchions, fake plants, tripod display stands, coffee dispensers, sugar, equal, stir sticks, cups, tables, chairs. Dimensions variable: 2007-2008.

Everything is Better Now
infomercial
chart
bus tour
and
refreshment station

This piece was installed at the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts in San Francisco, CA as Part of the Bay Area Now 5 show (July-Nov 2008). It was curated by Valerie Imus and consisted of a presentation station, a chart, a video presentation about the importance of ambiguity in life, a refreshment station and a bus tour of places in San Francisco where personal emotional crisis became public.

The Infomercial:

Get the Flash Player to see the wordTube Media Player.

Everything is Better, the importance of Ambiguity in Life
16 min. Digital video, 2007
The video features the editing and cinematography work of Shane King, and the acting talents of Jon Ingbretson, Erna Herzog, Jenifer Wofford, Matthew Troy and a whole slew of others (Mike McConnell, Robin Li, Kara Hearn, Jaime Cortez, Pete Nelson and the amazing Joe McKay… not to mention an entire bus load of muni riders). See below for full credits.

The Motorized Trolley Tour of places in San Francisco where personal crisis became public:

The actual tour will took place on September 13th from 3-5. Thirty individuals were taken around San Francisco on a tour of famous historical locations where personal crisis became public (see the tour brochure below). Actors were set up in various locations around the city in order to reenact the particular moments of public crisis. However, along the way, the tour guide began to experience his own personal crisis as the logistics of the tour fall apart. The tour slowly derailed and the individuals on the trolley were unwittingly pulled into a choreographed drama that takes place at various locations around the city. The secret plot involved a fight with the tour guide’s ex-girlfriend over a possible affair with her tennis instructor, an argument about a shoe, and finally a complete emotional breakdown in front of a bar in the mission where the tour guide claimed he was attacked by his ex-girlfriend’s lover, Mr. Tennis. The curator of the show (Valerie Imus, who was in on the whole performance… and a damn fine actor), pulled the tour into the bar (the Latin American Club), and announced that the drinks are on the Yerba Buena Center and profusely apologized for the mess. Meanwhile, the tour guide and his ex-girlfriend were yelling at each other on the street, essentially trapping the tour in the bar. The piece ends with a monolog from Mr. Tennis, who has been sitting on the stage the whole time, playing music as a DJ. His monolog involves his side of the story and essentially frames the entire derailment/ crisis as a theatrical event. The tour guide and his girlfriend never return. The tourists drank their beverages and climbed back onto the trolley, which took them back to the Yerba Buena center.

The Tour of Places in San Francisco where Personal Crisis Become public featured the talents of Jon Ingbretson, Christina Lowery, Matthew Troy, and Valerie Imus (who played herself). The full tour would not have taken place if not for Edward Moran and Martin Rapalsky of The Latin American Club and the support of the Yerba Buena Center.   Erin Coker, with the help of Max Schroder, provided video documentation of the tour.


Video Production Credits

Writer, Director………………………………Jonn Herschend

Director of Photography……………………..Shane King

Sound…………………………………………Shane King

Editor………………………………………..Shane King and Jonn Herschend

Key Grip……………………………………    Ben Hess

Production Assistant…………………………Z  school

Wardrobe Consultant………………………    Ms. Max Schroder

Special Effects……………………………….Joe McKay

Original Music……………………………….Wayne Schroeder

Cast in order of Appearance:
John………………………………………….Jon Ingbretson

Linda Cole…………………………………..    Erna Herzog

Video store manager…………………………Mike McConnell

Video Store Customer…….…………………Robin Li

Car Driver………………………………………Kara Hearn

Bus Driver…………………………………..    Jaime Cortez

Highway Patrol officer………………………….Pete Nelson

Mr. Tennis…………………………………..    Matthew Troy

Woman who takes the shoe………………….Jenifer Wofford

Sound Man………………………………….    Joe McKay

Camera Man…………………………………    Jonn Herschend
Passengers on the bus:

Michelle Alesandro, Lorene Anderson, Joseph Barber, Cheryl Brinkman, Ellen Campbell, Chris Cobb, Rich Coffin, Renee Curran, Callum Day Ham, Fynn Day Ham, Melissa Day, Leah Edwards,  Ben Frombgen, Haven Frombgen, Sam Frombgen, David Hamill, Hans Herzog, Sarah Keefe, Hugo Kobayashi, Jill Manthei, Jersey McDermott, Juanita Rusev, Michael Smith, Christina Stavros, Nina Thompson

Special thanks:
Kota Ezawa, Anne Walsh, Amy Hicks, Max Schroder, Tony and Sherrie Groshong, San Francisco Muni, Mike McConnell for his Apartment, Will Rogan for the extra video camera, Rick Popko for the police uniform, Complex Corporation for Insurance, Beyond Pix, Fayes Video and Espresso Bar
Why this is not going to work so well productions  © 2007
This production was made possible by a grant from the UC Berkeley Dept. of Art Practice and the McPheter-Stolz Fellowship