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Goats walking in Downtown El Paso part of art project

By Maria Garcia, MariaG@kvia.com.
Published On: May 03 2013 06:15:40 PM CDT
Updated On: Jan 15 2014 07:21:37 PM CST

Artist Christine Foerster discusses her public art project involving goats walking around El paso. She was joined by one of the stars, Zenith.

EL PASO, Texas -

A baby goat named Zenith led a walk through Sunset Heights near Downtown El Paso on Friday, inspiring ideas and making people do a double-take.

Zenith, along with her fellow goat, Luna, are part of a public art project funded by the city's Museums and Cultural Affairs Department. Christine Foerster won a highly competitive artist incubator grant for $3,000 from MCAD.
     
Her project encompassed buying the two goats from a farm in Northern New Mexico. Both were about $300 each.

Foerster has scheduled goat walks with El Pasoans who are trying new things. The point is for the goats to lead the walkers in an improptu walk and explore new spaces, and thus potential new ideas. "Goats are an animals that historically have been kind nomadic. With goats there's another living being you really feel that you can't always run your straight course the way  you wanted to do things

The guest walker on Thursday morning was Robert Leal, a permaculture specialist, who's trying to plant gardens and grow sustainable food in neighborhoods.  "There's nothing better really than food to bring people together and that's the beauty in what we're doing," he said.

Foerster shoots a video of the walk with a small camera she ties to her head. She also collects an artifact during each walk that she'll coat in goat's milk. And she'll make ink paintings of the goat impromptu route. Then she'll show all those things an exhibit in the fall. The materials for all those things, her website for the project (goatwalking.com) plus feeding the goats is also paid by the $3,000 grant.

Christine said the goat's adventures lead to people's inspirations. "I have learned that El Paso is made up of some really incredible people ...to spend an hour with an architect and an hour with the city attorney and an hour with a permaculture specialist - it's just this wide range of perspectives of how we can build a better city together."

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