Thursday June 14, 2012
Like all Expo Line stations, one artist was commissioned to create original artwork for each of the new stations. There are between 8 and 24 individual art panels per station, which are displayed above the entry archways and seating areas. The panels present a body of work by a single artist and add a continuous visual narrative that defines the rail line as it travels through various neighborhoods.
"The artwork is an entry point to different layers of LA-both its neighborhoods and its people." said Jorge Pardo, Director of Art & Design for Metro Creative Services. "The art beckons to transit riders at a human scale, offering a glimpse and a flavor of life along the Expo Line."
Durable materials at all stations ensure the artworks are resistant to graffiti and color fading, and are easy to maintain.
Farmdale Station: Michael Massenburg, All in a Day
Massenburg depicts scenes of daily life in the neighborhoods surrounding the station area. Drawing on the history of Dorsey High School and the surrounding community, the art panels illustrate the many people who have contributed to the area's growth and cultural life. The artwork uses mixed media techniques, and combines imagery that is representational and abstract.
In developing the artwork designs Massenburg painted portraits of many well-known neighborhood figures and local residents. Examples include: Dale Davis, a longtime arts instructor at Dorsey High School and a co-founder of Brockman Gallery; Libby Clark, an editor at the Los Angeles Sentinel newspaper; Timothy Washington, an artist who lives in the Leimert Park neighborhood near the station; and Nikki Blak, a poet who lives and performs in the area. The portraits were combined with boldly painted backgrounds to characterize the vibrant neighborhood and its residents.
The artwork is displayed as a series of 24 glass mosaic art panels.
MORE on The Source: Art for the Expo Line: All in a Day by Michael Massenburg
Culver City Station: Tom LaDuke, Unknowable Origins
LaDuke expresses a dreamlike vision of Culver City and honors those who had an influence on its development. Softly rendered painterly views of Culver City as seen from surrounding hillside viewpoints frame the entry to the station. Abstracted face shapes of historic, political and entertainment industry notables that have shaped Culver City appear in each of the art panels. These include entertainers like Elizabeth Taylor, Lucille Ball and Louis Armstrong; politicians such as Julian Dixon, who helped obtain the funding that enabled construction of the Metro Rail system; as well as the city founder himself, Harry Culver.
On gateway arch art panels, the face shapes float across the length of the landscape, their placement determined by the notes of a musical score, composed by the artist while riding the train. On seating module art panels, the shapes visually reverberate outward like rings on a tree, their outlines encircling icons from the city seal-a bear, a flower, a motion picture industry camera and the sun.
The artwork is displayed as a series of 8 glass mosaic art panels.
MORE on The Source: Art for the Expo Line: Unknowable Origins by Tom LaDuke
Metro Expo Line
The 8.6 mile first phase of the Expo Line connects the Westside by rail to Downtown LA, Pasadena, San Fernando Valley, South Bay, Long Beach and dozens of points in between. With 10 new stations serving USC, Exposition Park, and diverse LA neighborhoods such as Culver City, the Crenshaw District, and Downtown LA, the Metro Rail system will expand to 80 stations and over 87 miles of rail to destinations across LA County.
Metro Art Program
From rail and bus stations to transit facilities, construction fences and poetry cards, Metro Art enriches the transit environment and contributes to the artistic vibrancy of the neighborhoods we serve. Metro commissions artists to create engaging artworks that make the journey more inviting and pleasurable for transit users. The artworks mirror Los Angeles County's rich contemporary and popular cultures. Established in 1989, the Metro Art program has commissioned over 300 artists for a wide variety of temporary and permanent projects. Artists are selected through a peer review process with community participation. All works are created specifically for their transit-related sites. Metro's public art policy allocates one half of one percent of project construction costs for art.
For more information and free docent guided tours of the Expo Line-and all Metro Rail stations-visit metro.net/art or call 213/922-4ART.
Artwork copyrighted, all rights reserved. To request images of artwork for publication please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Editors Note: "Metro" should be used when referring to the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority.
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