Andrew Sell

Andrew Sell
graduate, University of Michigan School of Art and Design

Tottered on: 8 May 2008
Temperature: 58 F
Ceiling: partly dusky
Ground: not-yet-mowed grass
Wind: E at 11 mph

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TT with HD: Andrew Sell

[Ed. note: In April 2008, Andrew Sell helped organize the Warehaüse show in the space adjoining the Liberty Lofts development at 1st and Liberty St. The work he exhibited there can be appreciated in visual form on Andrew Sell's website. But you cannot experience it directly by sitting on it there. This is the internet.

However, Andrew will, together with others, over the next year or so, produce some art on North Campus that can be experienced directly. ]

HD: All right, we're good to go. Hop aboard!

AS: [laugh] I haven't been on one of these in such a long time.

HD: Yeah, if I were to list out the most frequent first utterance on the teeter totter, that's probably it.

AS: Really? [laugh]

HD: Let's very quickly get some teeter tottering portraits taken. [Ed. note: Photography ensues.] Alright is this going to work out for you?

AS: Yeah, this is going to be fine.

HD: Alright, you don't have issues with motion sickness or anything like that?

AS: No.

HD: Well, welcome to the teeter totter!

AS: Okay!

HD: Thanks for coming over.

AS: You're welcome!

HD: And you know, before I forget, thank you guys for giving us a month almost, of activity over there at the old warehouse. Because it's been kind of disappointing to see that sit empty as long as it has sat empty. I'm sure it will sit empty for a little while longer at least--but it gave us a little break from the emptiness. So that took like four months of negotiations and bureaucracy to sift through?

AS: Just about. The School of Art and Design, they provide spaces for their senior students to exhibit their work. There's three. There's Slusser Gallery, and Work on State Street, and Work Detroit--they are great galleries. But the problem with it is, it's really hard to show 90-some students' works for an entire year. A year's worth of work in those three small galleries . So the 16 of us, we had always been friends in school, growing up, we had always had classes together, and all of our work kind of related to each other in some way. We just got together, and we decided that we wanted to show all of our work offsite in a space that would allow us to create and show as much work--and large work, too--as possible.

HD: So really the concept of having this thesis exhibition wasn't new and novel in and of itself--it was simply breaking off a chunk of them in a separate new venue that was novel?

AS: Exactly yeah. This is the first time it's ever been done on this scale, though.

HD: Well, it was nice to have it on our side of town.

AS: Yeah, yeah. And what's really important to us was that it got out into the community, it wasn't just up in the school, where it would just be seen by professors and other people in the University.

HD: Right! That's why I was so geeked about it. That it was a good specific example of the University community reaching out, and inserting itself into the larger Ann Arbor community, just geographically. And I think it's nice to have specific examples of that to point to. Because it's something that people say oftentimes that this kind of thing happens, but if you press them for examples, they'll say, Well, I don't know, but I'm sure it happens all the time. That's always been a source of frustration to me, so I will add this to my list, as an example.

AS: I think it really started off as--everyone walks by that space, to commute to school, or to work, they see the space and think--I'm speaking for myself--but I always saw that space and I was like Wow, this is amazing I can't believe it's not used! I know a little neighbor girl of mine said that's where she thought the train slept. [laugh]

HD: [laugh] Oh, really! So you live around in this neighborhood?

AS: I used to, last year. Right off West Liberty. And we just saw the space, and it was amazing. And really all it took was one phone call--to Colliers International.

HD: Did you make that phone call?

AS: I made that phone call! And I think the reason that they became interested, is because I didn't necessarily say that I was a student right off the bat. I just introduced myself as, Hi, I'm Andrew Sell, and I'm with the University of Michigan School of Art and Design, we're looking for a space to exhibit 16 seniors' thesis work and would like to talk to you about renting a space for the spring. And it really took just a couple of months of paperwork, phone calls, e-mails--with Colliers, with Morningside Group--and then it became an issue with talking to the City about permits, about fire codes, regulations ...

HD: ... wow, so the City of Ann Arbor had to get involved?

AS: Yeah.

HD: Wow, okay.

AS: They were completely in support of it. They loved the idea. I think they maybe turned a blind eye to a couple of things.

HD: Anything specific you would care to mention? [laugh]

AS: Nothing that I thought was a big issue. But it is a huge space, and people could get lost in almost our labyrinth of walls that we created.

HD: So I guess they probably wanted to make sure that there were adequate exit signs? In case of emergency, people would know how to get out of there?

AS: There were also no bathrooms, too. Did you notice that?

HD: Well, you know, I didn't. Because I didn't happen to need to use the bathroom when I was there! I have to say, I don't think I would have expected that there would be bathrooms there--given what I know of the space.

AS: It was a big issue with the City to have bathrooms on site.

HD: But you wound up not having bathrooms, and that was something they kinda said, Okay well, because this is just going to be for three weeks plus total ... ?

AS: ... they were also worried that we didn't have heat and it was the beginning of April. It was kind of cool, it was brisk during our opening, but the week before that it was beautiful to work in there. So it took a lot of work with the City, and then the real project became getting everyone together, managing 16 artists is ...

HD: ... to hang the show?

AS: Yeah, to hang the show and to create the walls, to fund-raise for the event.

HD: I was gonna ask you, who fronted up the cash for the 2 x 4's and sheetrock? That was the main expense, right?

AS: That was all students.

HD: Really? So you guys just paid that out of pocket?

AS: We did, yeah.

HD: Wow.

AS: All of the construction was done by the students, by us. All of the work, we paid for the walls.

HD: So then I am totally beholden to you personally, because I have 24 8-foot 2 x 4 studs in my garage that I snagged from the salvage operation afterwards.

AS: Yes, I mean we really wanted to make sure that everything was re-used as much as possible. So a lot of people got wood, my parents got a whole bunch of wood. They're building a brand-new chicken coop.

HD: Are they really?

AS: Yes.

HD: Now, wait a second, you're not saying that to humor me, are you? Did someone put you up to this?

AS: No!

HD: Because I don't know if you have been following the evolution of Ann Arbor politics ...

AS: ... something is going to happen where they are going to allow chickens, right?

HD: Well, yes. However. Well, let me just ask you, you grew up on a farm?

AS: I did. Yeah.

HD: So did you grow up with chickens?

AS: Mm hm.

HD: Did you actually have personal responsibility for taking care of the chickens?

AS: Yeah, chickens and horses were my forte.

HD: So you didn't just do it, you are actually good at it!

AS: I was in the Junior American Poultry Association, and I started the actual American Poultry Association chapter right before I got into college. So I have been raising everything from ...

HD: ... so now are you sure you're not just making this up, because this is too big a coincidence for me to even believe!

AS: No! So I have raised everything from standard breeds, to bantams, and I really got into some rarer breeds--there's this French breed called Salmon Favorelles.

HD: How do you spell that?

AS: It's salmon as ...

HD: ... like the fish?

AS: Like the fish. And then F-A-V-O-R-E-L-L-E-S.

HD: Okay, that will save me some time looking it up is all.

AS: Yeah, it's an interesting breed. They've got a fifth toe.

HD: Woah!

AS: It's just a unique breed that I liked. And my parents have really been into conservation of heirloom varieties. The reason why they are building the new coop, is that my mom is getting a new breed this year, Blue-laced Red Wyandottes.

HD: So are they good layers?

AS: Yeah. Any of the Wyandotte's are a really good utility chicken.

HD: Okay, so look around the backyard here, and I'd like you to make an assessment ...

AS: ... yes ... ?

HD: ... of this backyard and that garage. So the idea would be to make a little ramp and like a little guillotine door into the garage.

AS: Yes!

HD: You know for their indoor, nighttime accommodations. And then there would be an enclosed coop outdoors. Do you think this is a big enough and reasonably-enough-sized arrangement to do that with four hens?

AS: Of course! I think here in your yard area, I wouldn't even consider putting up another fence, or another container area.

HD: What they are considering passing though, I think would require the outside accommodations also to be enclosed and covered.

AS: Oh, really??

HD: Well, I think the idea is to protect them from urban predators. You know we've got a lot of raccoons that live in the storm drains. And there's actually been sighting of a coyote over on Eberwhite, recently. I mean it's not like we have coyotes roaming around in packs or anything, it's just that they do exist, and it would be a shame to lose a chicken, just because you didn't have it contained.

But the main feature of the ordinance that they are discussing passing, is that they want to have 40-foot setbacks from dwellings--so if you look at 40 feet from my house and from the neighbors' houses that puts you past the back of the property line. And then the other thing is, they want to have you seek permission from anybody with adjoining property, even corner-to-corner. So over there, the house on the corner would be able to say, No, you can't keep chickens. For any reason! Those are the two aspects of the arrangement that I personally object to, because it's a deal-breaker as far as me legally being able to keep chickens.

AS: I can see how it might be pertinent to keep people informed beside you, and maybe behind you, but I don't see how someone that is ...

HD: ... corner to corner, seems extreme, yeah. Now when you say, 'keep them informed'?

AS: I don't think you need to ask permission to keep them.

HD: Yeah, I think it's one of those things where there is plenty of precedent for zoning variances, where you're required to notify adjoining property owners, or you are required to notify property owners within a certain number of feet, if you are seeking some kind of variance. But there's a difference between notification--saying yes, this is planned to happen, unless you come and make a case why it shouldn't happen--and then on the other hand having to get permission. It's like having to get permission from your parents to do something after you're grown up or something. So we'll see how it turns out. They passed the ordinance on first reading with these sort of, what I would consider to be, draconian restrictions.

AS: Yeah. [laugh]

HD: They still have the option to remove those restrictions on second reading. So I'm doing whatever I can to encourage our Council to basically trust people's judgment and not trust people's neighbors' judgment. My motto is, you know, Neighbors are idiots, just ask the people who live next door to me. Anyway, back to your stuff.

Now your particular work, I was reminded of by watching American Idol.

AS: Oh yeah??

HD: Yeah, a couple of weeks ago, because it was Neil Diamond night. Do you watch American Idol at all?

AS: I don't.

HD: Oh, god, you are missing some mighty fine TV.

AS: Oh, jeez!

HD: So anyway, it's Neil Diamond night, right? And I don't know if you've ever listened to the lyrics to Neil Diamond songs, but man, how the guy ever sold a song in his life I'll never know. But there's this one song that goes something like, "No one heard at all, not even the chair". Whatever that might mean. But it made me think of your work that involves all these chairs. So first question about that. Do you consider that to be a bunch of individual, discrete works? Or is it one piece, all of the different chairs?

AS: I think the work as a whole, they are different meditations on what a chair is. You could say that they're all distinct, they come from different things. I guess the general premise that ties them all together is that they were--and still can be considered--a chair form. But they are not their regular utilitarian purpose, they don't serve that purpose anymore.

HD: Let me put it even more brutally: If somebody wanted to buy the one that you call Reed Chair, just separately from the rest, is that something you would be willing to part with separately, to just sell a person that one item out of that group?

AS: I would say, yeah. Because each one exists on its own and it has its own different story, and that's how they've been created. That one was really kind of a meditation on personal space.

HD: If you look at your sketchbook, you can see the clear origins of that where you conceived of it as sort of a public seat, that provides personal space with this stuff that's growing in the planter around it to act as a screen. So you can see that connection between the sketch and the finished work.

AS: Yeah, if you do take a look at my sketchbooks, the beginning of that really started with the fascination about screening, about how plants grow, and they kind of create this personalized environment for you. And I am just really into ornithology, I like Australian Satin Bower Birds a lot. And it's because they are creators. They create just like I do ....

HD: ... so these are the birds that make those elaborate sort of like miniature caves, instead of just nests that you sit in, they actually build things up and over, like it's a kind of canopy?

AS: Yeah! Yes, and they do makes nests, but these are completely different structures. They are structures that are made by the male for display, or performance, like a stage for them. Each species makes something different. The Satin Bower Birds make a cave-like arbor structure that's reminiscent of the chair, they decorate them with lots of different things just to attract females. And they use those spaces to dance around in, to perform in.

HD: So, earlier you mentioned that the 16 of you, that you saw relationships between your work. So to me, if I reflect on that, one example might be the chair that has been sort of deconstructed by sandblasting, or sanding--you've sort of assembled the remnant pieces in the shape of the chair--and then there was the piece--I don't remember the name of the student who did it--with the pencil shavings?

AS: Michelle Panars, yeah.

HD: Okay, so you end up with the shavings from the pencil forming a part of the work, sort of the remnants that are left over are very much integral to the work. Do you see that as a parallel to the chair desconstruction? Or would you say that was more sort of just random accident?

AS: I would say that's a parallel. We really learn by doing, and one of the main things that Michelle and I had been doing--we weren't quite sure what we were doing. We had been thinking about our thesis for so long that it became like everything is written down on paper, but nothing was being done with our hands. What she just started doing was messing up pencils, and that's what she was doing, and I was like, Okay I have to do something, too. So I carved the chair, sandblasted it, and started collecting pieces, and made sure that I collected everything I took off of it--so that it could be reassembled in a new form, like a shadow.

HD: Right. So the pieces that form the shadow, did you like glue those down in any way?

AS: Mm mm.

HD: You know, I would have checked right at the exhibition, but I have had really bad luck doing things like that--touching stuff. I remember--this was back in Bloomington, Indiana--I was in this art gallery and I picked up this sculpture that had a base, and it was something that could be spun around a spindle that was coming out of the base, and I picked up by its top, I didn't really realize that the thing came apart into two pieces, but when I picked up by the top, the base stuck--initially.

AS: Uh oh!

HD: And then it fell out, and what I was holding it over was where it had been sitting, namely this big glass display. And it wrecked, I'm sure, a few thousand dollars worth of stuff.

AS: Ohhh!

HD: Yeah, and fortunately the gallery owner said, We've got insurance for stuff like that, don't worry about it. But I felt bad. My general rule of thumb now is, I don't touch anything. At all. Ever.

AS: That's too bad, because I really feel that like that the idea of what art is ...

HD: ... should be touched?

AS: I think art should be experienced. We perceive it in a visual form, but why not tactilely? Why can't we touch something? Why can't we sit on something?

HD: Well, that's very much the spirit of this whole enterprise of the North Campus, right? The C'ing Energy, and the WorkPlay--what was the name of the other group?

AS: They were WorkPlay Ground.

HD: WorkPlay Ground, right. Tell me a bit about that--I couldn't tell whether the $7500 prize money, did that actually go to you guys individually just as a reward?

AS: It was split up among the groups.

HD: So your cut on that was a couple hundred bucks or what?

AS: Mine was 1000. Each group got 7500 to disperse to their members and the WorkPlay Ground group had something like nine or 10 participants in it. Our group had six. And we designated our money based on who put a lot of work into the project, who devoted a lot of time. Joe Trumpey, who was our leader in our group, definitely got the lion's share of the prize money, because he put everything together. He kind of took everything, all of our research that we had done individually, put it together, and he did it himself, and he deserves it.

HD: So there wasn't like squabbling about who should get how much?

AS: Not within our group. I don't know what happened on their side! [laugh]

HD: [laugh] But you didn't hear that they were not able to amicably settle it or anything like that?

AS: No. I think everything in our group was handled and no one had any problems or issues. We made it very clear that anyone could bring up any issue at any time.

HD: Well, you know I really didn't want to get mired in the money aspect of it. Really what made me bring it up was your mentioning the touching, the tactile, the experiential nature of it. Because it seemed to me that both those projects that won the competition were very much in that spirit. One thing I didn't understand was what is the 'C' in the C'ing Energy?

AS: 'C' stands for carbon.

HD: Oh, okay. I thought that might be it, but then I thought, No, that can't be it. It's gotta be something else like vitamin C, or.

AS: The name needs a little work! It will have a new name now that we will combine elements with the new project.

HD: Yeah, I thought it was very cool was that the two winning teams have been asked to work together now. And the absolutely cool thing is that there is a budget of a half-million bucks! Right?

AS: Mm hm. And possibly more!

HD: So even though you have graduated, are you going to at least be keeping some kind of contact with, or possibly even working actively on it?

AS: I'm currently working actively on it. I'm here for the spring and summer for sure. And I'm working on the project. Our goal is to have the entire project sketched out, mapped out, the ideas, the concepts, have everything done for the fall. So that way in the fall we can come back and revisit with the planners exactly how this is going to happen and how it will work. And hopefully groundbreaking will be spring of 2009.

HD: That would be great. So as long as you are still going to be involved, let me throw my $.02 your way. The WorkPlay Ground description goes something like, '... will include slides, swings, and other implements.' And I thought, God, would it have killed you to say teeter totters?? Would that have been just too much to ask??

AS: [laugh]

HD: I mean just to write down the word 'teeter totter' in the list?

AS: I should mention that to them. There should be a teeter totter!

HD: Especially, because a part of your team's deal is not just having something to play on, but creating energy right?

AS: Right.

HD: I recently found online--actually several people sent it to me because they figured that I would be interested, and I was--a guy in Great Britain has designed a teeter totter that generates electric power.

AS: Really?!

HD: Yeah. And I don't know the details. I've e-mailed him, but e-mails I send generally get analyzed as spam, just because homelessdave as a domain name was a poor choice. But it looks like he has a hemisphere mounted on the underside of the teeter totter, so half of a wheel. So you basically convert the problem of, How do you generate electricity with a teeter totter? to a familiar already-solved problem, namely, How do you generate electricity using a wheel? You have to solve the problem, though, of sometimes it's going this way, and sometimes it's going that way. But if you are clever enough, you can solve that problem. And then it just becomes, Whatever I do with a bicycle wheel, I can do with a teeter totter. If you'd like I can show you the bicycle generator in the basement later.

AS: Oh, that would be cool.

HD: Anyway that's my $.02. Get teeteer totters involved somehow someway. Because everybody loves a teeter totter.

AS: One of the main threads is that we all have something interactive in it. It's either going to create energy, or it's going to create some type of music, or some type of visual for the creator, the person using ...

HD: ... the person who's actually using, or appreciating the piece of art experiencing it.

And also you know for your own work, I'm just thinking, chairs. As a utilitarian purpose they're something to sit on. A teeter totter, is also something that's fundamentally something to sit on. So there is that connection. So as you continue to think about chairs in your future work, you know, I would think about connecting two chairs with a long board.

So the chairs right now are at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Detroit, is that right?

AS: That's correct, yeah.

HD: So that was an ordeal to get them from one place to another, or?

AS: That was a little bit of an ordeal. I had to use my parents horse trailer to get some of the chairs there. The Reed Chair, which is rather tall, had to be laid down and inserted into the horse trailer. It wasn't that bad, but it was still a little bit of an ordeal to get it down to Detroit with this huge truck and horse trailer.

HD: So how long is it going to be there?

AS: It is there for, I guess, until the end of this week. They are setting up for the new show, which is Considering Detroit.

HD: That's the name of the show? Considering Detroit?

AS: Mm hmm. It's all artwork by artists in Detroit and about Detroit. Kind of like the rejuvenating city. It was a fun event. It was primarily there for the benefit gala. They commissioned me to create a piece for auction.

HD: Oh wow! As a result of looking at the chairs?

AS: Yep. It sold for 500. Which was great because the entire 500 went to the museum.

HD: Wow, that's a real feather in your cap!

AS: I was really pleased just to get back into the studio and work, because so much of the Warehaüse was creating walls and getting everything--all the paperwork and the logistics--I wasn't working in my studio. So just getting back in the studio it was a godsend.

HD: So let me make sure I understand this. The piece that sold at the gala for $500, that was a piece that they commissioned specifically for the gala? Or that was one of the chairs?

AS: That was commissioned specifically for the gala.

HD: So, what was that piece like?

AS: It was another rendition of the Planted Chair.

HD: Oh, the one that had the moss growing out of it!

AS: And the bromelia. It was done a little bit better though, I'd have to say. It was more of a take on an English garden, so it was mostly native plants around here, with a few exotics. Basically live moss, and I think it could be better utilized outside in anybody's home.

HD: That was a question I had about that particular piece. The title of it, Planted Green, sort of suggests that you know that's the way it was planted but how long is it going to stay green, we don't know.

AS: It'll turn all different shades of green, like the brown-green, too. [laugh]

HD: [laugh] And the Fur Chair as well, when I saw that I thought to myself, Wow it would kind the kind of cool to have a fur covering for the teeter totter with a zipper, but I'm not real handy with a sewing machine. So all the sewing involved in those pieces, did you just do that yourself? Is that kind of expected that any self-respecting art and design student will have basic sewing skills? Or can you just go to your buddy and say, I suck at sewing, how 'bout you do the sewing?

AS: I guess you could do that. I did everything myself. What the school is really good at when you do enter your freshman year, and even in your sophomore year, you are exposed to all different classes and all different medium, so you learn sculpture, you learn wood, you learn metals, and painting, and ceramics, and sewing, and fiber arts and weaving.

HD: So they just sit you down and say, Okay, guys, here's how you thread a sewing machine and here's how you wind a bobbin?

AS: Exactly, yeah. So it's not like a normal art institute, where you are a painter, and you only take painting classes and you don't know how to do anything else. It comes from the Bauhaus. That's kind of where the Warehaüse came from, as well.

HD: This is Walter Gropius? Was he the Bauhaus guy?

AS: I believe--I don't even know anymore! But the Bauhaus really emphasized this learning so many different things, and bringing it together, so that you are crossing boundaries with your medium. And working with many different people. That's kind of how Warehaüse came together is we all worked on something different, with different styles, with different subjects, and we all kind of reflected on how each other worked. I think one of the reasons why I did the Fur Chair is that I had friends that were always in the fiber studios, that had done the costumes and the more fashion end of the area. And the deconstruction, with Michelle again. And then Diane Johns had done her paintings with latex and rubber, the balloons, kind of coming from that book--have you read Stiff?

HD: No.

AS: It's a book about how bodies decay and what they become ...

HD: ... oh, is this related to the Body Farm?

AS: It's not related to the Body Farm.

HD: But you know what the Body Farm is, then, right?

AS: Yeah, I do.

HD: So down in Kentucky or Tennessee somewhere and the FBI basically lays out corpses and studies how they decompose.

AS: Yes, but this I think is talking about more historically about what happens to the body. So they look at mummification, and they look at some of the bodies that were preserved in peat, in Ireland, and just what the body looks like when it decays. So all of her paintings are about something about decay. And my chairs, the Burnt Chair and the Sanded Chair were something about decay. And weathering.

HD: Sort of accelerated decay! So this gang of you, this gang of 16, did you go through graduation ceremonies together on the Diag?

AS: Yes, we did.

HD: How was that?

AS: The Diag, I think, was a momentous occasion. I had never experienced a graduation at the Big House ...

HD: ... so it wasn't like there was something to miss.

AS: No, I'd never experienced the Big House--I know what the Big House is, I've been to football games--but I couldn't see how graduating in the Big House related to being a student here. The Big House is about football. The Diag is about the student body. Everyone walks through it. Everyone purposely misses stepping on the block 'M' so that they don't fail their first blue book exam.

HD: Oh, is that the legend?

AS: It's one of those suspicions. If you are a freshman and you haven't taken a blue book exam, you're not allowed to step on the block 'M' in the Diag. Because if you do, you will fail it. And everyone needs to get to Angell Hall. I loved getting to the Dana Building, that's where all of my environment classes were.

HD: Do people really call that Natty Sci?

AS: Natty Sci??

HD: Colloquially? The Natty Sci Building?

AS: Maybe. I've always learned it as the Dana building. But I could see it as Natty Sci.

HD: Or maybe it's that people refer to courses as Natty Sci courses, maybe that's it?

AS: Oh yeah. That's permitted. So it was kind of amazing to see so many folding chairs

HD: All zip-tied together, right? [Ed. note: Chairs. Remarkable that HD didn't make the connection between 30,000 chairs at UM graduation and the work of AS, and then tie those themes together.]

AS: Zip-tied together. All on this plastic layment that they had put down on the lawn.

HD: I guess they are now seeding and aerating now to rejuvenate the lawn. You know I read they spent close to 2 million bucks or whatever it was on it. And I wonder really how that stacks up though against the price tag when they hold it at the Big House. Because it costs something, right?

AS: It does.

HD: Doesn't come for free, putting on the graduation at the Big House. So I'd be interested in knowing what the comparison is straight up cost-wise. I gotta feel like it must feel better to have it on the Diag. You've got backs on all the chairs, for one thing. That's an advantage over the Big House. Thinking about parents and grandparents, I mean, would they rather sit on a bleacher or would they rather sit on a chair with a back? And just the venue being filled with humanity.

AS: It was packed!

HD: As opposed to the Big House where, unless you get 100,000 people in there ...

AS: ... it feels small--it feels too large actually, and your crowd feels small.

HD: It feels wrong and makes you feel small. It feels like you are knocking around in a big empty space. I had that experience when the Big Heart Big House 5K--I think was the name of it--it was a 5K run that finished inside the Big House. And it was a great finish, I would absolutely do it again in a heartbeat. But one thing I noticed, the Big House, as the Big House, felt like we didn't have enough people to fill it up. Is there anything else you wanted to make sure that we touched on before we dismount?

AS: I guess the Warehaüse is ended, and all the walls are out now. They are still looking for a potential buyer. The School is really interested in buying it for a gallery or for studio space.

HD: Oh, so you are talking about the people who own that building are looking for somebody to occupy it.

AS: Yeah. Morningside Group is still looking for someone to purchase it. I think they're going towards more commercial. So it could be a grocery store, or market, or smaller shops. Which I think if it was a grocery store, or some type of smaller market, it would be great for the West Side!

HD: I think it would, too. I think it would pull downtown a little bit more this way. Sort of extend downtown so you didn't feel like downtown ends right at the railroad track. Or actually, because of that hill right there on Liberty Street, once you go past the Fleetwood, you feel like, Okay, I am exiting downtown I'm going into the neighborhoods. And I think it would be good to extend the downtown psychologically. And I think a grocery store or someplace where you can buy food, would help. And I think having a place like that would help the Jefferson Market, I don't know if you know where that is.

AS: Yeah.

HD: You might see that as competition to the Jefferson Market, but I think the more traffic there is, the bigger the market is for stuff like that, the better everybody does.

AS: And I also like this idea, especially for the West Side, because it's communal and it's so walkable, everyone could just walk to the store and buy groceries, instead of walking further out to the Farmer's Market or the Food Co-op.

HD: Yeah, even though it is very walkable as you point out, there are some days where you think, Wow, do I really want to walk all the way to the Farmer's Market? And if I could just walk down to the railroad tracks, boy that would be great. Listen, thanks for coming over to ride!

AS: No problem, it's really fun on this!

HD: And we got a bonus chicken conversation out of the deal!