Jeffrey Giza Whitman, Requardt and Associates, LLP
In 2003, David Hess designed, fabricated, and installed a 200-foot-long sculpture in the Consolidated Rental Car Facility at Thurgood Marshall-Baltimore Washington International Airport in Linthicum, Maryland.
The Airport Architects, Michael Baker and Associates had established that the sculpture occupy a space on the upper level of the 40-foot-tall atrium. This was the primary requirement. Initially, they urged the other finalist and me to incorporate a Maryland theme in our design.
Whitman Requardt & Associates, LLP studied the forces that the sculpture exerts on the structural steel for the building. These studies required a significant upgrade in the structural beams to accommodate the 13,000 lb. load that is supported by four connections 200 feet apart. The sculpture was installed during construction. The finished floor and ceiling were added after the sculpture was completed.
The sculpture evokes a childs toy as it makes a dramatic sweep across this huge, expansive room. It implies motion and flight for the visitors to the terminal, who are already engaged in their own journeys as they, like the 8' aluminum sphere, travel from point to point.
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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.
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