New art goes on display at West Hollywood Park

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Wave Staff Report

WEST HOLLYWOOD — The city has installed two new pieces of art at West Hollywood Park, one permanent and one temporary.

The permanent addition to the city’s public art program is the sculpture “Parallel Perpendicular” by artist Phillip K. Smith III, sited in the Robertson Gardens area of the park along Robertson Boulevard between Santa Monica Boulevard and Melrose Avenue.

The temporary artwork is Travion Payne’s “Heteronormative: Death of the Golden Child” on the ground floor of the park’s five-story parking structure, 625 N. San Vicente Blvd. The 9-foot by 9-foot temporary vinyl mural was installed Feb. 7 and is anticipated to be on display through September 2023.

“Parallel Perpendicular” is comprised of five freestanding mirrored volumes composed of parallel and perpendicular planes hovering above a 40-foot diameter circle of green landscaping. By day, the forms reflect the park visitors and environment as well as the surrounding West Hollywood views. By night, the mirrored surfaces become pure fields of color that slowly move through the color spectrum, reflecting off each other and creating new spaces of color, projection and reflection.

The artwork is built from a stainless-steel internal framework that is wrapped with a custom glass lay-up of two-way mirror and clear mirror lay-up with an internal safety lamination.

LED lighting at the interior of the framework provides an even glow across the various surfaces while simple hardware components control the color choreography and power supply for the lighting. All five of the volumes hover on a 12-inch diameter brushed stainless steel tube (internally bolted directly to the framework) that provides both structural support and connectivity for wiring.

Smith is known for creating large scaled temporary installations such as “Lucid Stead” in Joshua Tree, and “Reflection Field” and “Portals” at the Coachella Music and Arts Festival.

His public artworks can be viewed in Los Angeles, San Francisco, Kansas City, Nashville and Oklahoma City.

Through his painting, Travion Payne hopes to bring attention to the fact that Black and LGBTQ individuals face an increased risk of suicide due to societal factors and other complications. The “golden child” is a reflection of a reality that many face today.

Payne is an African-American artist from Houston. His art sheds light on controversial topics that offer insight into the issues that Black men face, such as mental illness in correlation with religion, colorism, homophobia and fragile masculinity within the Black community.

The city’s Arts Division offers a variety of arts programs.

For more contact the city’s arts manager, Rebecca Ehemann, at (323) 848-6846.

The city has reopened a large portion of West Hollywood Park that had been closed because of Phase II of the parks master plan implementation project, which includes the Aquatic and Recreation Center building.

The remaining fencing on-site surrounds areas that remain temporarily closed to the public while construction and inspection work are being completed.

The city is anticipating a phased opening of the Aquatic and Recreation Center building beginning in April. Recreation staff, including lifeguards, will be fully trained in the operation of the site and pools prior to permitting public access.



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