Inspired by Coral Gables’ history and tropical life in South Florida, artist Jessy Nite created and suspended bright words, phrases and a poem above Giralda Plaza. As the sun passed through, shadows of the colored letters became magnified and stretched, moving and dancing across the ground, chairs, people and anything else below. By shining through the two thousand letters of colored, UV resistant plexiglass, the sun became a narrator telling a story of nostalgia, humor, and aspiration.
The goal of Sun Stories was to welcome residents and visitors, through art, to encourage a socially engaging experience for discussion; gathering of family and friends; sharing with others through social media; inciting reflection; arousing curiosity and inspiring repeat visits to further explore Coral Gables.
Sun Stories was a commissioned artwork through the City of Coral Gables' Art in Public Places program. The Historical Resources & Cultural Arts department and the Economic Development department joined forces to collaborate on the Call to Artists, marketing, permitting, installation support, and programming of special activities in support of the artwork. The City's Business Improvement District assisted with the area businesses to ensure a smooth installation during and after business hours.
While the sun moved across the sky, the work did a “performance” of sorts. Each moment of each day looked different and gave viewers an excuse to come back to see the changes. The Sun is a major character in the story of Coral Gables and this installation shows how we are all unified underneath its warmth and glow.
An extension of Jessy Nite’s popular Sun Installations (which have been installed around the US and Internationally), this was the first long-form text execution.
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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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