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Empty chair placed next to Clint Eastwood hiking trail marker

September 4, 2012 |  3:14 pm
Clint Eastwood chair
Call it art imitating life.

The Clint Eastwood cutout overlooking the Glendale Freeway now has its empty chair -- a nod to the film director's much-talked-about appearance at the Republican National Convention last week.

Life-sized cardboard cutouts of Eastwood, John Wayne and Gene Autry have been keeping watch over Glendale for months as part of an effort by Glassell Park resident Justin Stadel to spur a conversation about public art.

But it was Eastwood’s 12-minute conversation with an empty chair for an apparently invisible President Obama that spurred an addition -- or two -- to the art display.

The film director's improv on stage at the Republican convention in Tampa stole the show and prompted a lot of riffing. Almost immediately, the Twitter handle @InvisibleObama was created, attracting tens of thousands of followers. (A sample tweet: “I'm behind Mitt! No seriously. I'm right behind him.”)

The performance also spurred a new verb -- “Eastwooding” -- with photos of people and animals gesturing to empty chairs proliferating social media websites.

-- Jason Wells, Times Community News

Photo: A cutout of Clint Eastwood in the hills overlooking Glendale got an "empty chair" addition following the famed actor's curious appearance at the Republican National Convention.  Credit: Raul Roa/Glendale News Press / Sept. 4, 2012)