When I presented the project at Cornell, I spoke about all of the labor and artists, designers, and craftspeople involved in making the project. It is important to me to credit people who help with fabrication, and to be in dialog with them about how to do so in a way that respects their self-presentation. For example, some people do not want their fabrication “day job” to be known about.
Herman Jean-Noel, who I met at a TradeSchool class, asked me if I would be open to him making a documentary about what I was working on. I was thrilled, and decided to pay him something, to support basic costs.
I wrote to Herman:
July 21, 2016
Thank you for your interest in making a film about me. That is SO generous!
One thing: I won't be fabricating the table tops or legs, but I will be making the mirror and the column stools. So there's no welding or wood cutting or ceramic casting here. There will be CNC machine routing and mirrorizing and framing here soon.
I would love the stools and mirrors to be documented, and also the sketching and planning process on paper and computer—yes!
Maybe I could pay you to document the installation at Cornell, and the people involved in the fabrication? We will be installing Aug 17–20 or the first weekend of Sept. Or you can focus on the parts of the project that are happening in NYC this summer?
I'm way over budget and know you're a pro, so didn't ask you. That said, since you're offering, I am thrilled. I'm happy to pay $500 plus your travel for the documentation. I know that's not much for your skill, but I want to pay you something.
Herman wrote back:
July 22, 2016
Good morning Caroline,
All of that sounds good to me.
Thank you for offering a budget!! You are correct something of this nature can run up several thousands to say the least. It’s very thoughtful of you to be on the transparency tip budget wise. I'm happy to accept what you are offering, since that can cover the cost of travels, plus audio recorder.
What are your work dates looking like for your portion of the fabrication process, also for the casting and welding taking place at Cornell?
I will need you to debrief me on the scope of a work timeline.