No Lifeguard on Duty is an installation for the 2017 Waller Creek Show sited at a unique location on Waller Creek where an aging weir allows the creek’s water to pool and where steps along the creek’s edge invite visitors to dip their feet in the cool water. The installation is a response to the site and the broader culture of Austin’s swimming hole culture and long history with neon-based art. Waller Creek is not Barton Springs, nor any of the other treasured naturally-fed swimming holes in the region. And it never will be. Waller Creek is an urban waterway that has its own complex identity, a composite place influenced by both downtown and the larger watershed. No Lifeguard on Duty proposes a pool club for a waterway that will never have one. Here you can relax by the pool serenaded by the lights and sounds of the Red River cultural district. You can mingle with other pool-goers, or you can party till the sun comes up. But just remember, there’s no lifeguard on duty. No Lifeguard on Duty was on display in Austin in November of 2017 and was one of six installations selected from more than 40 proposals.
Leonid Furmansky, David Brendan Hall