cloud

permanent public art installation for a mixed use development, culver city, california
client: greystar, commissioned in conjunction with the culver city art in public places program

materials: mirror-polished stainless steel, fog system
size: 25’x13‘x14’
art consultant: beatrix barker & associates
structural engineer: brad w. smith
metal fabrication: magnum companies
fog system: mee industries
photos: merge

the art installation is part of a design for a public plaza / pocket park in a mixed use building complex at a busy intersection in downtown culver city.

the large sculpture was designed in response to the city’s desire to implement a water feature on the plaza. the goal was to create a water feature that is sensitive to southern california’s climate and water shortage, and maximizes the benefit of water to create a micro-climate in the park. if desired in response to drought conditions, the sculpture stands on its own without the water component.

in creating our design, we wanted to evoke the qualities of water in the sculpture itself. fascinated by the process of the water cycle – nothing is being added or deleted in the infinite movement of water on, above and below the surface of the earth – we used the figure of a möbius band as inspiration.

the sculpture is made of a twisted mirror-polished stainless band. the resulting shape is reminiscent of a raindrop. its perception changes dramatically according to the viewing angle. nozzles along the two narrow edges of the band intermittently emit fog, thus enveloping the sculpture in a cloud that is both surprising to the patrons of the park and cooling to their environment.

8 minutes

permanent public art installation for fire station 24, san jose, ca
client: city of san jose public art program

materials: led sign, ceramic tile w/ glazed-on photographs
size: led sign 40’x15”, 2 facades w/ tiles ±22’x30’
led sign fabricator: yesco
tile fabricator: tile artisans
photos: merge

our design consists of two parts – a call time archive and photographs & text snippets that explore the topic of the “emergency standard response time” – a time frame of eight minutes within which firefighters at this fire station have to arrive at any given emergency.

a led sign, connected to the alarm system of the fire station, was integrated into the facade above the fire engine bay. the led sign displays the last eight times the firefighters went on a call. every new emergency call activates the display – a narrow red strip moves across the display changing the background from white to yellow over an eight minute period. when the eight minute cycle is completed, the background color changes back to white, and the time of the most recent emergency is added to the display.

with the activation of the display the public is able to sense the abrupt change in speed of life at the fire station. the timeline becomes a continuously updated record of the firefighters workday, thus making their work more transparent to the public.

in the second part of the artwork, porcelain tiles with applied text and photographs were installed at the exterior entrance foyer of the fire station. these images and text pieces relate the notion of 8 minutes to everyday life outside the fire station.

27 text snippets describe events that typically occur over 8 minutes, some derived from science, others from popular culture or everyday experiences.

time-lapse photographs depict 8 minutes out of the everyday life of 30 local residents. each photograph is composed of 8 images taken from a fixed perspective with one exposure per minute. the background works as a still image while the person depicted follows his/her activities and appears as multiples on the image.

passersby

permanent public art installation at a mixed-use building at lake avenue, pasadena, ca
client: the hanover company, commissioned for the pasadena public art program

materials: glass w/ photographic interlayer, concrete stain
art consultant: beatrix barker & associates
glass fabricator: cesar color
photos: merge

our installation utilizes four architectural steel/glass canopies that mark the primary entrances and spread out along the facade of the building. we transformed these architectural elements into a light-box construction that illuminates a continuous glowing band of photographs.

images of different people who responded to a public call for participants cover the bottom side of the glass canopies. the photographs show people walking and standing, as seen from above, and vary in scale according to the different installation height of each canopy.

we continued this topic with a corresponding element embedded in the side walk beneath the canopies: we constructed the “shadow” of each depicted “passerby”, as if each person that is shown on the canopies above was standing in exactly this position on the sidewalk right underneath it. the resulting fake “shadows” are traced and permanently captured by embedding the shadow shapes in the sidewalk using concrete stain and cutting shadow outlines into the concrete.

together the photographs and the shadows of these “passersby” created a hypothetical urban population, as might be found on such a busy intersection as lake avenue and green street.