The stone faced chauffeur approached, “I can’t

believe they hassled you for that.  It’s so beautiful.”

Rockefeller security hit hard, first a young guard, Teague, dashed at me, tapping my arm and ordering me to stop. Then a white-haired authoritative man in full suited regalia commanded, “You can’t do that, this is private property.  All of this is owned by Rockefeller Center.”  I kept asserting this was a public sidewalk and security kept denying it telling me to go to the Avenues on the other side.   The security have this shameless tactic, they stand in front of the videographer, they’re afraid to have their behavior and lies on video – so as Joe Ayala, Protection Supervisor talks his associates form a visual 

actively blocking my cameraman from capturing Ayala and the NYPD’s behavior.  It’s like in South America or Israel where the police put on balaclavas – they have moral and legal anxiety over they’re actions and attempt to conceal their behavior.  To my surprise NYPD only questioned me for a few minutes.  I assured them the sand was temporary and as Officer Borum looked for an situation in which I’d block traffic I assured him, no, if a passenger steps out of their car and crosses my sand painting I won’t stop them in any way.  I noted that no one had ever intentionally stepped on my sand paintings. 

That people always show enormous respect.   The peace officer left me in peace.  His radio blared  soothingly as I knelt in the cold and moved the grains of sand to form the rope font of “RAMROD’s” theater logo on 20 Rockefeller Plaza. “Congress shall make no law...abridging the freedom of speech...”

Barricade of human backs,


9:00 pm a sweet sweet press photographer fawned over my piece and ushered me inside for the post auction buffet.  After 8 hrs non-stop I was hungry and grateful to Christie’s for the repast.  When we came out Christies had swept the sidewalk clean.  The photographer was shocked.  When the public unintentionally erases my sand work it feels like a DuChampian act of chance & nature.  The press photographer felt that an antagonistic company’s sweeping up the “work” was vandalism.

Photography George Courtney