If you saw a huge, inviting, very comfortable and mostly empty beach towel draped over the sand at your favorite beach, would you just plop yourself down, introduce yourself to new friends and start basking in the sun? Well, if it the towel was placed there by Miami artist Misael Soto, that’s exactly what he would want you to do.
Soto’s latest art project is a 56 foot by 29 foot beach towel. He lays it out on the beach, welcoming and encouraging anyone to occupy it and enjoy themselves. Soto says he hopes to “subert the way beach-goers claim their temporary real estate on the beach.” At the beach, he says, people usually separate themselves by using their personal beach towels to claim their territory. His project breaks down those barriers and brings people together. He provides sunscreen, drinks, snacks and games to help entice people to become part of his living art project.
Basically, he wants people to get together and have fun, but on his website he provides a much more profound narrative, saying he is providing a space “where I create the opportunity for communal transcendence above the conditioning of capitalism.” Soto also has Facebook, Tumblr and Twitter accounts about his project.
The towel weighs 250 pounds and seats 400 people. It takes four people about 15 minutes to lay it out on a beach. Soto first unveiled the towel in Miami Beach in June, and in July he began taking it on a tour of some of the east coast’s most famous beaches.
To finance that tour, Soto created a KickStarter account, where he exceeded his goal of raising $1,500.
If you want to be part of this unique art project, here are the dates of the Beach Towel tour:
Miami Beach, 21st Street – Saturday, July 28
Fort Lauderdale Beach, Las Olas Blvd – Sunday, July 29
Hollywood Beach – Monday, July 30
Daytona Beach – Wednesday, August 1
Jacksonville Beach, Jacksonville Pier – Thursday, August 2
Myrtle Beach – Saturday, August 4
Nags Head – Sunday, August 5
Ocean City, MD – Tuesday, August 7
Ocean City, NJ – Wednesday, August 8
Belmar Beach – Thursday, August 9
Rockaway Beach – Saturday, August 11