During the DNC, check out the cop car that tells immigrant stories

This fomer cop car is art. Really.

When Miami artist Steven Gagnon decided to bring his latest "video sculpture" to Denver for the Democratic National Convention, he had no idea how good his timing would be.

Gagnon’s Border Cruiser is a converted police squad car designed to make some pointed commentary about the plight of illegal immigrants. It features a video interview with a Brazilian immigrant, who describes the hardships he faced both crossing the border from Mexico, and once he arrived in the U.S. Speakers on top of the car -- where the police lights should be -- blare his story, while the video is projected onto the rear windows.

The goal, Gagnon explains, is to give the feel of an immigrant telling his story from the back of a cop car. And that’s especially appropriate now in Denver, where voters have decided the city should impound the cars of unlicensed, undocumented immigrants.

"I had no idea," Gagnon said upon hearing the news. "I guess I should bring my passport, then."

Gagnon plans to drive the Cruiser up to Denver in time for the start of the convention Monday and park it outside Buffalo Exchange, at 230 East 13th Avenue, for the duration of the festivities. It will be on display 7 p.m. to 12 a.m. Monday through Thursday. Then Gagnon will head to Minneapolis for the Republican convention.

For more info, visit Gagnon’s website and or read an article about the Cruiser’s Miami debut that appeared in the Miami New Times, Westword's sister paper. -- Lisa Rab

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Michael Roberts has written for Westword since October 1990, serving stints as music editor and media columnist. He currently covers everything from breaking news and politics to sports and stories that defy categorization.
Contact: Michael Roberts