Street Park Parable - Transit
City of Long Beach,
Long Beach, CA
Artwork Budget: $300,000
PUBLIC CORPORATION FOR THE ARTS. Long Beach, CA. Street Park Parable, with Jon Cichetti- landscape architect, and Frances Wosmek poet. Landscape, poetry, mosaics, and reflective vinyl animals as symbols of our humanity. Project budget: $300,000. Commissioned, designed, built, and installed in one year - 1997.
The site was previously occupied by Native Americans and is now the gap between two disparate shopping centers. Using pets as symbols of our common humanity, I had Frances Wosmek write a parable using Native American symbolism.
A large dog and cat, argue about the supremacy of their time of the day - until a large snake slithers up and imparts wisdom, Parrot weather-vanes gossip, and swivel. Mosaics in the sidewalk and benches enhance the sandblasted parable, read as walking the site. The landscaping and art collaboration was significant and highly successful. The reflective vinyl is awesome at night in the car headlights, and in the day in the California sun as well.
It is fitting that this piece about time reflects time. Note the date, now 20 years old it looks as good, and carries as pertinent a message, as the day it was installed. Isn't that what public art is all about?