Drawing a Line: Scajaquada Creek
Drawing a Line: Scajaquada Creek was performed on September 23, 2010. In the performance, the artist traced the pathway of a buried section of the Scajacquada in Buffalo, New York using a push broom and water from the creek itself…The Scajaquada was buried in the 1930s and is covered by streets and rights of way that weave through the east side of the city. Throughout the US, daylighting initiatives (which uncover buried streams) have sought to improve neighbourhoods through the restoration of creeks, rivers and streams, while respecting property rights, local businesses and the structural integrity of existing buildings.
By redrawing the pathway of the creek through the East Side, a series of historically Black neighbourhoods that had been ignored within public policy, bisected by freeways and scarred by race riots, Thompson’s performance reintroduced the Scajacquada to its surroundings through temporary gesture, the systematic marking of territory, and ritualized artistic labour. On April 30, 2011, Thompson created a second version of this performance at Broadview and Queen, the neighbourhood where her father grew up.