Artist Statement / Metropolis Phase I
Our vision for the Metropolis Phase One Public Art Project is based on our shared belief that Los Angeles is a city of the future, and that nowhere is this more evident than in the energy and spirit of its Downtown. We propose an Artwork that both expresses and responds to that spirit – one that is born of a synergy of architecture, art and engineering.
The working title for the Artwork is Convergence. Like the city of Los Angeles, Convergence is creative, an entity in constant flux, growth and renewal.
The Artwork will be sited on the five-story facade of the Residential Tower that fronts the main plaza to Metropolis Phase One. Convergence will make use of state of the art technology’s ability to respond, reflect, and explore its immediate context. It will activate the public plaza through the media of live content, narrative, parametric design, generative art techniques and interactivity.
The project considers the building facade as a canvas to fuse art and technology, one which will capture the spirit of Los Angeles and reflect back features and activities into the surrounding neighbourhood. Our intention is to create a lively public space by giving urban activities a new experiential dimension that engages pedestrians, residents, tourists and visitors alike.
Convergence is a generative construct, fuelled by data and informed by aesthetics. We will begin with an exploration and documentation of Downtown Los Angeles’ rich culture and history, interconnections and synergies within the local community, and connections to the broader city. Global data streams will provide opportunities for new connections and linkages. By offering a perspective that is both personal and global, the Artwork will be responsive to its site and place in Los Angeles, as it brings an awareness of ties to other communities, cities and countries. Using the latest advancements in new media technologies, Convergence will not only represent these connections, but engage the viewer in a dynamic and interactive experience that will evolve over time. Convergence can also be explored and experienced virtually. A QR code link gives easy access to its multi-layered content. The public can engage in this virtual environment on site with a portable device or connect with a PC.
The Artwork will be viewed in several ways: by the passing motorist, the pedestrian, residents, workers and all those who come to this public space. Convergence operates at multiple scales and changing perspectives. Its expansive scale will make it visible from Francisco Street and create an immersive experience from within the plaza. Visible both day and night, it becomes an extension of the building’s public face available to all a minimum of 12 hours a day.
We have been working closely with the design team – architect, landscape architect and lighting designer – to create an Artwork that comes out of collaboration of all disciplines and is part of the vision of Metropolis Phase One.
We believe that the Metropolis project will be a gateway to the district, and a reflection of a new Downtown Los Angeles community. At the core of Convergence will be an exploration of this diversity and creative energy, a synergy of place, culture, and the people of Los Angeles.
Susan Narduli and Refik Anadol