Elastic Park: Vote for Inflation Prehistoric Balloon Exhibition is Pepsi Refresh Project Contender

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"Airigamist" Larry Moss wants YOU to vote for inflation...of 100,000 balloons that will become a giant science exhibition/art installation/community project called "Elastic Park," that is. His idea is one of 729 up for publicly-decided grants from the Pepsi Refresh Project, on which voting opened today.

Larry Moss wants you to vote for inflation – the kind, that is, that will turns thousands of balloons into the first-ever prehistoric museum exhibition called "Elastic Park" (http://www.elasticpark.com).

The Rochester, NY artist applied for a $50,000 grant to build Elastic Park on January 13th from the Pepsi Refresh Project, PepsiCo's new social marketing alternative to spending $20 million on this weekend's Super Bowl ads. Today, Moss's and 728 other ideas for "refreshing projects that change the world" went online at http://www.refresheverything.com. The voting public will now decide whose dreams will become reality with PepsiCo's money, and Moss, who has created large-scale projects like this for the past 12 years*, believes he has a shot.

"Elastic Park is a giant art installation as well as a life-size science exhibit," explains the internationally-renowned founder/creative director of Airigami. "Best of all, it will bring people together in a way that can actually have life-changing capabilities – as 'overblown' as that may sound," he jokes.

Moss will lead a crew of fellow artists from all over the world in building the multi-thousand-square-foot exhibition using up to 100,000 balloons. Working alongside the artists will be hundreds of community volunteers, who are of vital importance in completing the enormous air-filled installation in less than a week.

"When they step back and say, 'Wow – I helped to create this amazing project!', it can start them thinking about other seemingly-impossible things that can be accomplished when people work together."

Inspired by Michael Crichton’s popular novel, "Jurassic Park," Elastic Park will combine art, science and community-building in a never-before-seen way. With input from prehistory experts, it will take visitors on an educational but highly entertaining journey through time as they walk among life-size dinosaurs from the Triassic through the Cretaceous periods. Along the way, they'll see some of the most unique "pop" art on the planet, and – perhaps most importantly – they'll learn the power of working together.

If awarded one of up to ten $50,000 grants, Moss plans to build Elastic Park later this year at Exploration Place in Wichita, KS, where it will also serve as the model for an extended national museum tour. Voting will close on February 28th, and the finalists will be announced March 1. In all, up to 32 winners will receive up to $1.3 million each month.

Airigami (http://www.airigami.com), the fine art of folding air, stands at the crossroads of three ancient art forms: sculpture, puppetry and origami. Artist Larry Moss uses airigami to create "full-blown" installations that enchant both young and old, and – whether it's a ten-room haunted house (Balloon Manor*), the world's first piloted balloon sculpture (Fantastic Flying Octopus*) or a pre-historic museum exhibition – they bring people together in the way that only the best public art installations can. He has displayed his work in 12 countries on four continents, and his achievements have been recognized by The Wall Street Journal, the Associated Press, CNN Headline, PBS, Smithsonian Magazine, American Profile and Ripley’s Believe It or Not! Moss has appeared on The Martha Stewart Show, NBC's "Today" and at the White House, and has held the Guinness World Record for the largest non-round balloon sculpture since 2000*. The author of many published ballooning books, Larry also has a degree in applied math and computer science, as well as a master’s in elementary education.

Media, please note: high-resolution photographs and broadcast-quality video are available, and interviews and photo/footage opportunities may be arranged.

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Sally Cohen
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