Art

We met Tampa Int’l Airport’s giant flamingo

The Stuck at The Airport arts team is a big fan of big art at airports.

And Tampa International Airport’s (TPA) giant flamingo doesn’t disappoint.

The sculpture is 21 feet tall and lives in TPA’s main terminal. The creation of artist Matthew Mazzota, the sculpture is officially titled “Home.” But thanks to a naming contest hosted by the airport last year, the big bird is now better known as Phoebe.

We finally got to meet Phoebe in person and have to say we are just wowed.

The flamingo isn’t the only newish big work of art at TPA Airport. And far from the only appealing artwork in TPA’s impressive public art collection.

Aaron Stephan’s “Paths Rising,” in the Main Terminal walkway to SkyConnect Station, is composed of over 600 ladders set inside a light well and positioned to imply a portal to what lies beyond.

(Courtesy TPA Airport)

Fresh art at O’Hare Int’l Airport

If you’re traveling through Chicago’s O’Hare International Airport (ORD) over the holidays and are passing through Terminal 5 (T5) you’re in for an art-filled treat.

The installation of a $3.5 million public art commission featuring work by more than 20 Chicago artists is nearly complete and it’s pretty darn impressive.

Here is a selection of the works you’ll be able to see.

Above is a part of the piece titled a murmuration by Jina Valentinewhich consists of 600 wall-mounted convex aluminum discs of varying sizes on view in the Passenger Level Concourse.

The artwork is a data visualization mapping over 200 years of immigration to the Illinois region. The color shifts as you move from one end of the piece to the other, illustrating the changes in immigration patterns over time.

Shinsekai Yori / From the New World (above), by Mayumi Lake is on view in the T5 International Arrivals Corridor.

Buffalo Chart at O’Hare, by Bernard Williams, is also in the International Arrivals Corridor.

In addition to all the new works on view in Terminal 5, you’ll find art in Terminal 1, Terminal 2, the Terminal 3 Rotunda, the muli-modal transportation facility, and elsewhere on the O’Hare Airport Campus.

Queen Charlotte returns to Charlotte Douglas Int’l AIrport

Charlotte Douglas Int’l Airport welcomes back Queen Charlotte

Charlotte Douglas International Airport (CLT) is hard at work on Destination CLT, the airport’s $4 billion capital investment program.

And the Terminal Lobby Expansion (TLE) is a $608 million piece of that project.

The west side of the TLE opened in July, 2022. And now the east side of that section is set to open at the end of October.

This section delivers about 90,000 square feet of new space, access to the east subterranean walkway, and TSA’s Checkpoint 1, with eight screening lanes. .

Travelers through this new east side lobby area will also find large windows, terrazo flooring, bright blue tile frames for the entrances and exits, and new sculptures and murals.

Pasengers will also see an old friend.

While construction has been underway, the airport’s statue of Queen Charlotte was moved out the way and then taken offsite for a restoration and a repatina.

Now she’s back.

Last week, airport officials unveiled the refreshed 3,000-pound, 15-foot-tall bronze sculpture of Queen Charlotte, back on top of a 30-foot tall base.

The Queen Charlotte statue is now in the center of the Queen’s Court, the name for the Terminal Lobby Expansion space. Queen’s Court is also home to Queen Charlotte’s Kitchen. This is CLT’s first pre-security sit-down dining option, offering breakfast, lunch and dinner as well as wine, beer and cocktails.

How did the Queen Charlotte get to CLT?

In the late 1980’s a local group put up $250,000 to commission an airport sculpture to symbolize the city and greet CLT passengers.

Washington, D.C., artist Raymond Kaskey won the commission and his statue of Queen Charlotte was dedicated on Sept. 18, 1990.

For many years the statue stood on a fountain in an outdoor plaza between CLT’s hourly parkng decks. She’s been been moved around and taken off site for several years to accomodate airport construction.

Here’s a video of Raymond Kaskey talking about the getting the initial commission for the project and creating the sculpture.

(All photos courtesy CLT)

Travel Tidbits from an airport near you

New artwork to greet passengers at Salt Lake City Int’l Airport

Salt Lake City International Airport (SLC) already has several large-scale artworks by artist Gordon Huether, including the 400-foot Canyon (above).

Coming soon: the completion of his 90-foot outdoor art piece echoing the mountain peaks for which Utah is famous.

SFO Airport is celebrating Dia de Los Muertos

San Fransisco International Airport (SFO) is celebrating Dia de los Muertos (the Day of the Dead) with an altar, a mural, and live cultural performances through November 7 in Harvey Milk Terminal 1 and Terminal 2.

In Harvey Milk Terminal 1, look for the “Tree of Life” altar created in partnership with the Mission Center for Cultural Arts, and feel free to add the names of your loved ones to the altar.

In Terminal 2, artist Adrian Arias will paint a mural titled “Ancestral Hummingbird with Moon,” influenced by his Peruvian background.

Pittsburgh International Airport’s new terminal progressing nicely

Fresh art at Denver International Airport

 Denver International Airport (DEN) is hosting “Perfect Patchwork,” a quilting exhibition showcasing the work of 100 artists from Colorado.

On view from through February 2024, the exhibit features quilts from The Rocky Mountain Wa Shonaji Quilt GuildThe Denver Metro Modern Quilt GuildThe Colorado Quilting Council, and The Rocky Mountain Quilt Museum.

Visitors will find display cases filled with large hanging quilts, unique quilted clothing, and a variety of quilts in different shapes and sizes. Look for quilts representing the city of Denver, celebrating Colorado’s natural beauty, and featuring aviation themes.

You’ll find “Perfect Patchwork” at Denver International Airport in Ansbacher Hall, near the A-Bridge security, and on level three of Concourse C.

(Photos courtesy Denver International Airport)