Client: Dewberry Capital
Location: Atlanta, GA, United States
Completion date: 2013
Artwork budget: $50,000
Cameron Schwabenton, ASID, LEED AP
Interior designer, Cameron Schwabenton, ASID, LEED AP, was tasked with the design for the public space renovations at Campanile, an iconic office building in midtown Atlanta. The c.1987 8000 sq. ft. lobby, with forty-five foot ceilings and large expanses of marble and granite, was in need of renovation and humanization while still maintaining its solid materials and grand feel.
Upon removal of the lobby's escalator, a large granite cladded wall remained in need of softening and decoration. The design team worked with local artist Thomas Swanston to commission the perfect piece for the space: Early Morning Lift Off, a Migration Series acrylic and gold-leaf 18'x26' painting, featuring the regional migration of sandhill cranes. As the only permanent art piece, Early Morning Lift Off has had an amazing impact on the space and greatly contributed to the warmth and feel of the new lobby interior.
Swanston and Schwabenton worked together on the final size of the piece, with the artist providing photographic renderings of the overall scale and feel on the existing wall. The artist and designer also collaborated on the colors of the gilding, paint and background colors. Even the final direction of the sandhill cranes was discussed, so that they appear to be flying towards the forty-five foot glass fenestration wall, in the direction of the Atlanta skyline.
Thomas Swanston's paintings are inspired by the sandhill cranes that migrate in the thermal that rises directly overhead in the South Fulton area of Atlanta. His work reminds us that the overarching theme of migration carries a multitude of connotations; most notably, migration speaks to the mystical movement through space and time, from one location to another then, with an ultimate return home.