Interconnections, a triptych of mosaics, each one measuring 23.5 feet tall by 5.5 feet wide, created for the Lenexa City Center Public Library, celebrates the twenty-six letters of the English alphabet through a profusion of typographic fonts, both uppercase and lowercase, intermixed with images from the artists books — Alphabet City, Alphabet School, and A is for Art: An Abstract Alphabet. This artwork was made possible by a 1% grant for public art by the Johnson County Public Art Commission and the Public Building Commission of Johnson County.
Johnson says: "The goal of Interconnections is to inspire visitors to the library to view our world in a fresh and playful way, and in so doing, discover for themselves juxtapositions of scale, color harmonies, rhythms in surface textures, and joy in what may seem unremarkable or ordinary, by transcending the mundane and unearthing its hidden beauty."
Franz Mayer of Munich worked directly with the artist, getting to know his working methods and visual language, to achieve a dazzling translation of his collage-like imagery. Artisans employed irregularly cut glass cake and gems combined with Italian and Mexican smalti to make a highly charged surface that delights the eye and animates it's architectural setting.
Stephen T. Johnson’s drawings and paintings are in numerous private collections including those of musician Paul Simon and actress Cherry Jones, and in the permanent collections of Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh Pennsylvania, the New Britain Museum of American Art in Connecticut, and the National Portrait Gallery at the Smithsonian Institution in Washington D.C. His art spans a broad range of contexts and can be seen in site-specific public art commissions, gallery and museum exhibitions, and original award-winning children’s books such “Alphabet City,” a Caldecott Honor and a New York Times Best Illustrated book of the year.
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CODA: Collaboration of Design + Art
The global online community that celebrates design projects featuring commissioned artworks.
[ manifesto ]
Art matters. Attention to the details of our environment leads to love of place, which brings us to take responsibility for the spaces where we live and work. And by extension, the people with whom we live and work. And by extension, to our local communities, our cities, our nations, and our world.
We champion the role of artists in our society. We need artists to provide us with inspiration, creativity, and imagination, and to help us envision a better world.
Architects and designers know that remarkable design can change everything. They connect the dots across disciplines, collaborating with artists to make the world a more beautiful place. They are the ultimate patrons of the arts.
In the process, design professionals promote imagination and creativity, and through their commissions, make original art integral to and accessible in people's lives.
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The architecture of our buildings and the design of our interiors affect our happiness and well-being. Each of us deserves a daily dose of inspiration.