Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Expo Phase 2 Station Art Chosen

New art for the Sepulveda and Colorado/4th stations
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Link to article:
Station Art Revealed for Phase 2 of Metro Expo Line

Part of the commitment of LA Metro construction to the communities its trains traverse is station artwork that refers or connects to the stations' neighborhoods.  Recently the artwork that will adorn the new stations from Culver City to Santa Monica along the second stretch of the new Expo Line was revealed.  According to many who have seen the plans for the 94 panels, they reflect the growing sophistication of public art in LA.

Excerpt: "The next list of artists commissioned by Metro was recently introduced, and from that selection of eight artists -- selected from 400 applicants -- is a varied list of proposals and concepts for public art that will be installed on Phase 2 of the Expo Line as part of a provision to commit .5 percent of its construction budget to make the rail system a visual engagement between people and place.

Not unlike Phase 1, the concepts are designed to make station platforms engaging to pedestrians, rail commuters, and passengers and drivers in vehicles, says Zipporah Yamamoto, Creative Services Manager for Metro. Phase 2 of the Expo Line will feature a total of ninety-four art panels, with the installations ranging from 8 to 24 art panels per station, using glass mosaic, ceramic mosaic, and porcelain tiles fabricated for durability. The Colorado and 4th Street terminus station will host a sculpture by artist Walter Hood.

They don't have the theatrical scale of some Gold Line markers, like the basket-as-artifact symbolism in the Gold Line Bridge by Andrew Leicester, or Mariachi Plaza Station's 'El Nino Perdido' by Alejandro de la Loza, or even most of stations along the Red and Purple lines, making the new pieces seem diminutive in comparison. 'It's not budget cuts as much as limited room. It's about limited real estate,' said Yamamoto. 'There isn't space for large scale works at most of the Expo Line stations.'

The works are designed to be aesthetic links to the immediate neighborhoods that have a platform station. The ink on the artist's contracts isn't dry, but the proposals will be soon be introduced.

There cannot be a full review of public art until its installed, but based on the Phase 1 installation, the city is growing a sophisticated transportation ethos. Public art in stations is not the destination. The smaller works become markers along a journey that extends to a series of destinations to other city neighborhoods. During the first few impressions, there may be curiosity to the meaning of the works, and that can have locals and visitors feel like they are discovering a brand new city."

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