NPR logo

Happy Birthday, Mr. President, from Art Fans

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/5442772/5442773" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript
Happy Birthday, Mr. President, from Art Fans

Diversions

Happy Birthday, Mr. President, from Art Fans

Happy Birthday, Mr. President, from Art Fans

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/5442772/5442773" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

At a performance in Brooklyn, performance artist Sheryl Oring helps Dena Qaddumi craft a birthday message for President Bush. Dhanraj Emanuel hide caption

toggle caption
Dhanraj Emanuel

Latrisha Maynard, who attended the Brooklyn event, holds up an envelope addressed to the president. Dhanraj Emanuel hide caption

toggle caption
Dhanraj Emanuel

Performance artist Sheryl Oring recently sat in Prospect Park, Brooklyn, asking people to dictate birthday wishes to President Bush.

The idea is simple: You say it. She types it, on a manual portable typewriter that she brings with her. Oring then hands the writer a stamped envelope, pre-addressed to 1600 Pennsylvania Ave., Washington, D.C.

"I feel like people have a lot to say, and this is an amazing method to get at what people are thinking," Oring says.

Oring has done similar performance works in Berlin and in Manhattan, during the Republican National Convention. She is headed for seven other cities before President Bush's 60th birthday, on July 6.