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Ugly Coyote

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The city of Laguna Beach, CA had an artist install 5 concrete and resin figures on the front lawn of city hall.

According to a KTLA 5 news report, "The $25,000 art installation called “The Caretakers,” created by artist Mark Jenkins and approved by the Laguna Beach's city council and arts commission, is meant to "relate to lawn games and activities in the age of global warming," city officials said on Facebook".

Some people found the figures to be refreshing and some thought they were creepy. There was a newspaper article about the installation and the artist said he dressed the figures in the same clothes he wears.

I thought they were pretty cool, but that's just me.

P1020989 (2).jpg  P1020990.jpg  P1020991.jpg  P1020992.jpg  P1020993.jpg 

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aromakr

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Seems like a huge waste of tax payer money, when California is broke.

Bob

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Sam

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Reply with quote  #3 
I'm with aromakr on this one.
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Sam McMichael

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Ugly Coyote

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Reply with quote  #4 
The money comes from what is called a transient occupancy tax, or bed tax. It's a fee added on to hotel, motel, bed and breakfast and other short term lodging bills. The money is used to provide fire and police protection, emergency response, etc. and to sustain three nonprofit art institutions in the city. Many cities collect this type of tax. As of 2014, 1351 jobs were supported by these funds.

For those who don't know, Laguna Beach was originally an artists colony. The city still supports the arts in a big way.
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Bisch

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Reply with quote  #5 
I’m in the “thinks it’s stupid” crowd!!!! I also think it’s an incredible waste of tax payers dollars. It’s a plunger, for crying out loud!!!!!

Bisch

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I hail from about 4hrs southwest of Tim King! [biggrin]

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Draven

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Reply with quote  #6 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bisch
It’s a plunger, for crying out loud!!!!!

Bisch


Political correctness at its best !


But “de gustibus et coloribus non est disputandum”
I think the statues would be more interesting during the evening / night.

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Ugly Coyote

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Reply with quote  #7 
OK, I figured that there would be mixed opinions of the sculptures. This type of art always elicits strong feelings.

Please reread what I wrote about where the money comes from. Here's the short version to make it a bit clearer.

The bed tax is collected at hotels, motels, bed and breakfasts and short term rentals. That's money from people visiting the city. It's a fee added on to their bill. The locals aren't paying that tax.
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Steve Graf

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Reply with quote  #8 
While CA does have a large debt, they have been running a surplus the last several years which is supposed to hit 6 billion this year: https://www.foxbusiness.com/features/jerry-browns-legacy-a-6-1-billion-budget-surplus-in-california

I often scratch my head when I see these kinds of displays, but art (good or bad) comes from our better side.  It's what we humans can do that no other critter can.  I'm glad to see that the bent stick is in the mind of the artist.
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Selden Slider

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Reply with quote  #9 
I agree about the bent stick but when was the last time you vacuumed your lawn?
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chuckc

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Reply with quote  #10 
Art is good. What is art ? Look at the photo....in my mind, that is not art.
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ChuckC

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eddie c

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Reply with quote  #11 
And I thought the metal figures we have in our town was stupid. We have a metal man sitting at a bus stop.
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Bisch

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Reply with quote  #12 
Yes, the money didn’t come from the locals. It came from unsuspecting folks visiting the city, whose hotel stay would have been $10-$20/night cheaper if they weren’t paying for that “art”! I bet I know what the results would be if you took a poll of those folks staying in the hotels, and asked them if they wanted to help pay for that! That’s $25K for some chunks of concrete, one of them shooting a plunger, and another vacuuming a lawn. I wonder how many meals $25K could have bought for hungry folks??????

JMHO!!!!!

Bisch


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Sarrels Blueridge longbow 50#@29.5"
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I hail from about 4hrs southwest of Tim King! [biggrin]

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stickandstring

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Reply with quote  #13 
I see a conversation piece. Good news is, there is a bow involved. And 25k in this day and age is chump change.[smile]
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Draven

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Reply with quote  #14 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bisch
Yes, the money didn’t come from the locals. It came from unsuspecting folks visiting the city, whose hotel stay would have been $10-$20/night cheaper if they weren’t paying for that “art”! I bet I know what the results would be if you took a poll of those folks staying in the hotels, and asked them if they wanted to help pay for that! That’s $25K for some chunks of concrete, one of them shooting a plunger, and another vacuuming a lawn. I wonder how many meals $25K could have bought for hungry folks??????

JMHO!!!!!

Bisch



This is one way to see it, but there is another way too: 
Use tourists money to make the city a touristic attraction aka "let's go there since we are already in the area to see those weirdo's vacuuming the lawn". You spend tourists money to attract tourists that will spend money in the town and all locals will benefit from this. 

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aromakr

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Reply with quote  #15 
Sorry Ira:

My feelings go back to what my father told me many years ago. "Just because you have two-bits in your pocket, doesn't mean you have to spend it"

Bob

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ManuForti

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Reply with quote  #16 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bisch
I wonder how many meals $25K could have bought for hungry folks??????

JMHO!!!!!

Bisch



I’m a big believer and supporter of the arts, and am slowly coming to appreciate that all art has intrinsic value even if I don’t understand it. But I wrestle with precisely Bisch’s point (which is a good one), albeit in many contexts. Because it’s always there, isn’t it? I mean, there are few problems in the world more pressing than any human going hungry, or living in poverty. Yet we spend our resources on infinite other things, all with their own merit. But more so than feeding any last hungry person? To be perfectly honest, probably not. But meritorious nonetheless.

Take this site, for example. If we all on this site pooled our resources to serve the poor and feed the hungry, instead of buying bows and equipment, there’d be no stopping the impact we could have. But we don’t, and instead choose to spend our money on something we love—archery. Wrong? Not to us, but to many who don’t give a hoot about archery they’d be just as incredulous seeing the amount of money our community spends on sticks with strings and feathers attached to them instead of helping someone in need. And they’d be just as right to criticize us as a city spending thousands on art we might not understand.

No real answer here, other than to admit I do far less to serve the poor and hungry than I can and should, including the time and resources I spend on archery.
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David Mitchell

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Reply with quote  #17 
ManuForti, you have a thoughtful post. It is always easier to see the other person's faults than our own. It is an interesting piece of work.
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Hud

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Reply with quote  #18 
I understand, some in CA are talking about a ban on hunting; but that would cut down on their revenue from hotel taxes. 

Here is a quote from and interview Margaret Thatcher on taxes, from 1976.  It seems taxes were a concern then too.

I like art, but this particular one seems to miss the point, maybe it is just me, but a real game of horse shoes might draw more tourism for their city. 

 Margaret Thatcher Quote

“I'm never quite sure what you mean by consensus politics. I believe that what most people want in their lives, is what the Conservative Party wants to have for them. I believe that our policies are fundamentally common sense policies. Just let's take taxation for an example. Wherever I go I hear enormous resentment about the amount which people are paying out of their own pay packet in tax. And, this goes right across the income ranges. Socialism started by saying it was going to tax the rich, very rapidly it was taxing the middle income groups. Now, it's taxing people quite highly with incomes way below average and pensioners with incomes way below average. You look at the figure on the beginning of a pay slip, sometimes it can look quite high, look along the slip to the other end, and see how many deductions you've had off, those deductions have increased enormously under Socialism ... Public expenditure, which they always boast about, is financed out of the pay packet in our pockets. People are saying that they really think too much is being taken out of the pay packet for someone to spend on their behalf, and they'd rather be left with more, and it's now well-known that Socialist Governments put up taxes and Conservative Governments take them down. It's part of our fundamental belief giving the people more choice to spend their own money in their own way.”

~ Margaret Thatcher




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Bisch

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Reply with quote  #19 
ManuForti, I see your point!!!!

But, in this case, and a thousand others all over the country, you have a city council consisting of 10 or less folks deciding how to spend millions of dollars of money that is not theirs, but all of ours. It’s just crazy to me how they think spending money like that makes sense.

I guess on the other hand, they would think I was crazy for not seeing their point if view????

Bisch

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I hail from about 4hrs southwest of Tim King! [biggrin]

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tradlongbow

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Reply with quote  #20 

Bob,

My father told me, "If you have nothing good to say its better not to say anything at all."

NO COMMENT.[rolleyes]

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ManuForti

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Reply with quote  #21 
That’s the beauty of representative government, I suppose. If we don’t like the decisions they make on our behalf, including how to spend tax dollars, throw the bums out! Your view isn’t crazy at all, I suspect there’s others in Laguna Beach that feel the same way—and if enough do, well, those council members’ days are numbered.

But consider too: this local art installation has sparked a multi-day, thought-provoking discussion, now across the country (maybe even countries)—on Traditional Archery Society of all places! If the artist knew that so many people were discussing their work, in seemingly the most unlikely of places, they’d be ecstatic about the reach of their influence. And therein lies the intrinsic value of art—in perhaps totally unanticipated ways. Given that we’re still talking about it, and sharing really interesting ideas with each other that go far beyond just kinda creepy looking dudes on a lawn, I’d say the piece is a smashing success.
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Draven

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Reply with quote  #22 
Manuforti, I think the artist who did the "caretakers" was counting on the people reaction as a way to promote himself from the moment he knew he has the contract. And I bet the City council was counting on that publicity too. I've tried to find out if there is a message behind the art, but the artist denied, letting people to think by their own. My take is that "Caretakers are just the anonymous lunatics" - placing the statues on the City Hall lawn makes it even better.
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ManuForti

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Reply with quote  #23 
This is fantastic—with each post, we each get a little more contemplative, a little bit wiser. I know I can use all the help I can get in that regard. So I, for one, am grateful for public art displays, and even more so for the wide array of views and discussion it sparks. Ira, I doubt you would have predicted this would be the direction of the thread, but well done in sharing thought-provoking content.
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Sam

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Reply with quote  #24 
Well, one issue with art will always remain with us. Those that like it will strongly support it, and those who don't will complain about it. That is one reason I don't strongly support the use of public money on artistic projects (unless, of course, I happen to like the art). I'm not sure this argument will ever be resolved, but I bet I know which side the visitors who paid these taxes will take.
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Sam McMichael

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"The spirit of the bow dwells in the heart of all young men" - Geronimo

Hill Wesley Special (2, both 65#)
Hill Cheetah (2, one 55# and one 40#)
Hill Big 5 (50#)
NM Shelton (2, both 53#)
Deathwish Longbow (59#)
Archery Traditions Bamboo Longhunter (3, one 56#, one 60# and one 78#)

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chuckc

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Reply with quote  #25 
So...in that city, can the normal person shoot a bow and arrows ? Legally ? Betting not. So why is that "artsy thing" allowed ?
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ChuckC

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I did too !

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