“Shadow Array” will present a dynamic sculptural composition that utilizes the solar exposure of the valley south of DIA’s new hotel and transit center to engage the public with land and sky. Consisting of 236 beetle-kill spruce logs from southern Colorado, this sculpture will envelop the viewer and complement their migrating perspectives through a responsive arrangement of shadows cast on the valley slopes. Each individual log is calibrated and placed as an independent stroke anchored in an elliptical path, collectively forming a sculptural body that binds characteristics of the environment. Spanning over seven acres, this sculptural installation will subtly activate the valley with contour and shadow during the day and through transitioning illumination during the evening hours that mimics the rhythm of tidal shifts. Informed by the site and regional context of the Denver International Airport, “Shadow Array” will enhance and aesthetically transform the traveler’s experience.
“Shadow Array” and Forest Health
“Shadow Array” will utilize beetle-kill spruce and other species, the project is helping contribute to rehabilitation efforts on wildfire and insect affected areas, on the Rio Grande National Forest in Southwestern Colorado. The project is also helping to support a San Luis Valley family-owned and operated sawmill and logging business that is completing the harvesting and transportation of the logs to a staging facility east of Denver.
Beetle-kill spruce were harvested in 2014 from the Del Norte forest. The logs were then transported to Denver, where Marold and his team hand-peeled the bark from the logs to to complete the drying process and maintain the structural integrity of the logs. Traditional hand peeling was used to enhance the visual appearance of the logs. The logs will retain their natural form and were allowed to age and weather under natural exposure to sunlight and weather.
Public Art at the Hotel and Transit Center
Since Denver International Airport (DIA) opened in 1995, world-class art has been an integral part of the architecture and environment of our airport. The new construction of the Westin Denver International Hotel and Transit Center continues this tradition. Artwork will be featured in all corners of the new facility. The public art budget for the new Hotel and Transit Center was approximately $5 million thanks to Denver’s “one percent for art” requirement for public facilities. Denver’s Executive Order requires 1 percent of construction dollars on large construction projects be set aside for artwork to be integrated into the site. “The artists who were selected through a competitive process to create public art for the hotel and transit center are world-class,” said Denver Airport CEO Kim Day. “Their artwork will integrate with DIA’s iconic architecture and will represent elements of Denver’s landscape and culture.” Other artists whose work will be featured in the public spaces of the new Westin Hotel and Transit Center are Ned Kahn (CA), Yann Kersalé (FR), Mindy Bray (CO), Wopo Holup (CO) and Heather Patterson (CO).