Bus Obscura: Art Takes Over for the Cruiser



Jason Rand

In case you missed the hearsay or the September 21 article detailing Simon Lee’s Bus Obscura, you might have been caught off-guard when an “art exhibition” rolled up to take you to class last week in form of a white Colgate Cruiser.

“Does anyone know what’s up with the crazy bus?” a classmate asked. “Yeah, it’s really disorienting, especially when you’re hung-over,” another responded. Until experienced for oneself, the Bus Obscura is a curiosity dictated by the obscure descriptions of friends and classmates.

Speculation and hangovers aside, Bus Obscura is a welcome experimental form of artistic expression at Colgate that has been able to engage the entire community. Lee described his project as a cinematic experience of a thousand flipped mini images. Its inclusion as a Colgate Cruiser was an ingenious way to include the majority of the Colgate campus in an arts exhibition.

In the last year and a half, Bus Obscura toured Miami, New York City, Africa, Pittsburgh, London, and now, Hamilton, NY. Send many thanks to Professor Dewitt Godfrey for taking the initiative to bring Lee to campus. In doing so, Professor Godfrey fused Colgate’s strong arts department with the entire student body, faculty and the Hamilton community. Hopefully, Bus Obscura will be encourage other exciting avantgarde projects on campus in the near future. To all of those that had the chance to experience Bus Obscura, voice your appreciation for this project and interest in future exhibitions.

Experiencing the Bus Obscura was reminiscent of Matthew Broderick’s clich?e quote in Ferris Beuller’s Day Off, “life moves pretty fast. If you don’t stop and look around once in awhile, you could miss it.” Often, Colgate students get so caught up with academics and the desire to spend time with friends that they overlook all the opportunities that Colgate offers. A challenge to everyone would be stepping away momentarily from the busyness which seems to plague the entire campus and attempting to take advantage of available recreational options. You just might find yourself leaving Colgate at graduation with fewer regrets than the classmate who cared only about getting straight-A’s and going out seven nights a week.

Bus Obscura will be around campus for awhile longer, but if you are still interested in checking out Lee’s Bus Obscura, the project will be opening at the Munson-Williams-Proctor Arts Institute in Utica on Saturday, October 7. For more information call (315) 797-0000 or login to www.mwpai.org.