418 PARKS | Andy Magee

No one really knows where they will be a year from now. Life can pivot on a dime. One minute you are headed in one direction and the next you are spun around and pointed the other way.

When such a pivot happened to Andy Magee in early 2018, he decided to look into his future and see it as an opportunity to push himself.

Pushing physical and mental limits is not new to Andy. He has completed several art projects that would drive most anyone mad. The 3,700 coins he mounted to construct a portrait of Barack Obama; the 2,636 names he tapped, letter by letter, into wooden towers memorializing victims of 9/11; and the half mile of telecommunications wire he wove into a cube were all tests of his strength and endurance. 418 Parks will also be a test– by far his most ambitious, and most unclear.

When making an art piece, there is a tangible end in sight. When taking a trip the magnitude of 418 Parks, there is no tangible end. Unlike an art piece, the factors outside his control will be innumerable and compounded. There is no guarantee Andy will accomplish his goal of visiting every national park and monument in the United States within 365 consecutive days, and there is no “trophy” at the end if he does.

There will be, however, a record of his travels, an experience most of us will never have, and a testament to one man’s patriotism, conservationism, and conceptualism.