Tag Archives: Mosaics

Don’t be afraid of Ethnicity

Don’t be afraid of public artwork that strongly demonstrates its origination in  ethnic visual traditions.  Murals can be show people from different backgrounds or painted in the art traditions of non-western cultures.  Why can’t public sculptures be bronze castings of African masks.  Why can’t ceramic murals clearly originate in the traditions of Spanish or Moroccan wall and floor tiles?

In the 19th and 20th century, the dominant art establishment and intellectuals believed that progress and newness in art came exclusively from the artistic inventions in Europe and then the Americas.  Still today, despite the great respect in museums and universities for all traditions in art, the vast majority of public art is dominated by euro-american art.

One major flaw of public art thinking is that works from other cultural traditions should only be seen in the neighborhoods of those ethnic communities.  It is sometimes known as “race matching”.   Art about or by African Americans should be seen in African American neighborhoods, not in the center of downtown.

Given the 150 years of public art in the USA and Florida, some catching up may be required in African American, Caribbean, Mexican and South American neighborhoods.  Pride in community through public art is still a valuable service.

In the 21st century, many mature and talented artists exist from any cultural or ethnic backgrounds.  Many ethnic traditions have been continued by contemporary artists and craftspersons.  Perhaps ethnic and cultural diversity in a public art collection is the true new future.

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Idea for Development: Building Entrances

Lee Lawrie at Rockefeller Center, 1932
Lee Lawrie at Rockefeller Center, 1932

Since the beginning of architecture, front door or entrance has been a primary location for symbolic, religious or decorative elements.  When mansions, hotels and office buildings were invented, the entrance sequence from plaza, staircase, doorway and lobby became the first experience and taste of the building.  This sequence is always complete with art, gardens, lighting and decor of all types.   With the invention of plate glass, the outdoor plaza to indoor lobby merged together especially at night.

Isamu Noguchi at Rockefeller Center
Isamu Noguchi at Rockefeller Center

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Liam Gillick, Entrance and Cornice, UK
Liam Gillick, Entrance and Cornice, UK
Christopher Janey at Broward Library
Christopher Janey at Broward Library
Blackfoot-Crossing-Historical-Park
Blackfoot-Crossing-Historical-Park
Contemporary Art Museum, Raleigh, NC
Contemporary Art Museum, Raleigh, NC

Inside Lobby as Exterior/Interior Public Art

Dale Chihuly in Seattle
Dale Chihuly in Seattle
Kent Bloomer Reagan Airport
Kent Bloomer Reagan Airport
Cappy Thompson in Seattle Airport
Cappy Thompson in Seattle Airport

Artwork Guiding into the Entrance

Jenny Holzer at Aria Hotel, Las Vegas
Jenny Holzer at Aria Hotel, Las Vegas
Liam Gillick at 1 Centene Headquarters
Liam Gillick at 1 Centene Headquarters
Mari Gardner at Tampa Children's Museum
Mari Gardner at Tampa Children’s Museum

Armory Mosaic Mural by Lesley Davison

Lesley Davison produced the excellent ceramic and mirror mural on the north facade of the Armory Art Center building.  Davison gives inspirational credit to Isaiah Zagar in Philadelphia.

Armory Mural by Lesley Davison
Armory Mural by Lesley Davison
Armory Mural by Lesley Davison
Armory Mural by Lesley Davison
Armory Mural by Lesley Davison
Armory Mural by Lesley Davison

Student+working+on+wall+3Student+working+on+wall+1

Armory mural in progress
Armory mural in progress

 

Isaiah Zagar, Born 1939.
Isaiah Zagar, Born 1939.

Isaiah Zagar murals on South Street in downtown Philadelphia.  Started the murals in 1994 at age 55.  More info the Philly Magic Gardens.

Mural by Isaiah Zagar in Philadelphia - 1994-2004
Mural by Isaiah Zagar in Philadelphia – 1994-2004

 

Public Art at Fire Rescue Station #3 in Northwood

Visiting Fire Rescue Station #3 in Northwood for a discussion of the Parks Master Plan, we discovered the public art:   architectural establishments of the station.  Mosaics, tile murals and relief carving are types of public art that have been a part of Mediterranean cultures for thousands of years.  These great traditions from the Babylonians to the Romans to the Spanish Moors influenced the architecture in Palm Beach County since the early 20th century.

On the ground before the community room, a latin phrase is written that means:  FROM MANY PEOPLES STRENGTH.

If you want to learn the history of the WPB Fire Rescue Service, visit the website.

FireFighterHistory

Here is the public art.

Fire Station 3 Plaster Relief
Fire Station 3 Plaster Relief
Fire Station 3 Mosaic
Fire Station 3 Mosaic by Jeff Halverson:  Translation:  From Many Peoples Strength
Fire Station 3 Mosaic
Fire Station 3 Mosaic by Jeff Halverson 
Fire Station 3 Mosaic
Fire Station 3 Palm Mosaics by Jeff Halverson
Fire Station 3 Tiles
Fire Station 3  Handpainted Tiles
Fire Station 3 Handpainted Tile Mural
Fire Station 3 Handpainted Tile Mural
Fire Station 3 Handpainted Tile Mural
Fire Station 3 Handpainted Tile Mural

If you know the artist, please send us an email at ibiARTwestpalm@gmail.com.