Outdoor Furniture Art

On the way home from Great Sand Dunes National Park, we stopped in Buena Vista for a spot of lunch.  Buena Vista is a cute little mountain town that’s in the middle of reviving their riverfront property along the Arkansas River.  What’s emerging in that pocket of town is really, really cool.  They’re doing an excellent job with mixing styles of architecture, keeping the historic buildings, making things pedestrian friendly, and giving the area some charm with cute shops and restaurants within the residential neighborhood.  We liked Buena Vista before, but this little chunk of town is really turning into something.

During this year’s stop in town, some new art had been installed – seating areas made to look like living rooms but made entirely out of decorative tiles and mosaic work.  It was so fun and funky!  While I might not want to sit on this stuff on a bright, sunny, hot day for risk of searing my tush off, it’s quite something to look at.

Sit a Bit

Stay a While

Fun and as cute as the sets are on their own, you really start to marvel when you get in close on the detail.  There’s a ton of intricate mosaic work or painted tiles on each piece.  Unfortunately, we had some time constraints on our drive home, so I couldn’t take it all in, but I did get a few shots of those details.

Mosaic Madness

Oh, Kitty

Here, Doggy

Just another fun find along our annual journey to and from Great Sand Dunes!

 

– JC

Art Around Town

First, a quick bit of background:  Longmont is growing as a destination for artists to hone their crafts.  It’s become so big in creative circles and known for the variety of art around that Longmont’s downtown area was recently certified as a Colorado Creative District!  Getting that designation was a long time coming and it was a big deal when they finally landed it since it made Longmont the 12th official certified Creative District in Colorado!

Back in the day, I thought having the art around town was just a nice touch.  Something to make things pretty or cute as you’re walking around town.  Over the years, as pieces on public display have changed, it’s been fun to see some really cool works go on display – especially when they’re works I know I could never conceive myself.  It’s taught me a new appreciation for different forms of art I may not have noticed or been interested in before.

While shooting the “Play the Plaza” installation the other week, I did catch what I think is a new piece on display in the area around the St. Vrain Historical Society headquarters.  It was a tall and fairly slender white stone sculpture called “Protection” by Jade Windell.  The structure and curves in it reminded me a lot of the First Nation totem poles we saw during our trip to Vancouver last year.

Luckily for me, the light was hitting it in such a way I thought I could make a couple of dramatic black & white shots of sections of the sculpture:

I think I need to go back and really fiddle with some shots with this sculpture on a bright & shiny day to get sharper shadow lines that could create some extra drama.  Considering my goal was merely testing out my camera on whatever was around town that afternoon, not bad for a quick snag of a few shots.

My test shots weren’t done just yet though.  As we were almost back at the car and ready to head home, we walked through one of the cute alley ways and passed benches covered with mosaic tile that we’ve probably passed hundreds of times before.  But on this day, my eyes were a little more attuned to what was around me.

I noticed that the one of the benches was sponsored by the computer hardware & storage company Seagate.  (Seagate is one of the larger employers in town.)  Being that my schooling was focused on computer engineering back in the day, the first thing I noticed was the binary numbers incorporated along the edge of the mosaic.  Very cool!

Binary Bench Mosaic
Binary Bench Mosaic

My binary-to-decimal conversion skills aren’t nearly as sharp as they were – gasp! – 20 years ago when I started college, but I did take a shot at converting the numbers to decimal.  Best I can tell, the numbers on the left (from top to bottom) are 4, 6, 1, 5, 1.  The numbers on the right (top to bottom) are 6 and 5.

Not sure what – if any – significance there is to those numbers.  Of course, I’m assuming the breaks in the tile are also breaks in the binary strings and that I should read the numbers top-to-bottom.  Maybe they’re really huge numbers (9897 on the left, 53 on the right)?  Maybe I’m reading them backwards and should be reading bottom-up?  See what kind of questions art can provoke even in the most techno-centric minds?!

Maybe one of these days I’ll get an answer to my binary inquires.  For now, I’ll just continue to enjoy the different art pieces as they pop-up throughout the town we’re fortunate enough to call home.

 

– JC