SoCal public art projects shine in national awards
Five art projects that popped up over the last year in the Los Angeles area are among the nation's 40 "best public art works" cited by Americans for the Arts.
The nonprofit organization, dedicated to advancing the arts in the United States, announced the awards Saturday at its annual convention in Seattle. The honorees, in 32 cities in 15 states, were selected by artists Janet Echelman and Mildred Howard from more than 300 entries.
"Subdivisions," above, an art glass wall by Anne Marie Karlsen at the new Lawndale Library, was among works hailed as "the most exemplary, innovative permanent or temporary public art works created or debuted in 2008." Her 20-by-15-foot project, commissioned by the L.A. County Arts Commission, is a kaleidoscopic composition that incorporates fragments of Lawndale's history in images and text.
"Women in the City," a project that took feminism to the streets, was also honored. Commissioned by the Pasadena Arts Council and West of Rome, a public art initiative, it included Cindy Sherman's billboards of herself as a faux B-movie star, left, posted at Hollywood and Vine.
The outdoor exhibition also featured a montage of images and text by Barbara Kruger, a grid of posters by Jenny Holzer and birdcalls based on the names of famous male artists by Louise Lawler.
Other local winners were Dan Corson's "Empyrean Passage," a spiral of electroluminescent light designed as a gateway from Beverly Hills to West Hollywood; Ned Kahn's "Rainbow Arbor," a curved metal form that sprays a rainbow-like mist in a garden near the Noah's Ark exhibition at the Skirball Museum and Cultural Center; and three animal-themed works by Gwynn Murrill at 345 E. Colorado Blvd., a mixed-use complex in Pasadena.
-- Suzanne Muchnic
Photos: "Subdivisions" by Anne Marie Karlsen. Credit: Bryan Foto. "Untitled Film Still" by Cindy Sherman. Credit: Gina Ferazzi / Los Angeles Times. "Empyrean Passage" by Dan Corson. Credit: Courtesy of the artist. "Rainbow Arbor" by Ned Kahn. Credit: John Elder.