Flora and Fauna of Arizona - CODAworx

Flora and Fauna of Arizona


Client: Arizona Mills Mall

Location: Tempe, AZ, United States

Completion date: 2006

Artwork budget: $50,000

Project Team


Niki Glen

Niki Glen Studios


Helen Helwig

Helwig Studios


Flora and Fauna of Arizona consists of five monumental pillars of rock, stone, and mosaics installed on Arizona Mills Mall main entryway in Tempe, Arizona.
Size: 2,500 sq ft total, 300 sq ft mosaic tile, 2,200 sq ft rock and stone.
Materials: Handmade clay tile, river rock, flagstone, and ledge stone.


Handmade clay and stone mosaics embedded in five masonry columns. Many of the glazes for this project were specifically formulated by the artists. Flora and Fauna of Arizona is inspired by the layers of sedimentary rock that formed the Grand Canyon. The five pillars of stacked stone have handmade clay mosaics winding through the middle sections.


Niki Glen and Helen Helwig designed and fabricated this ceramic tile mosaic with contributions from other artists, students, seniors and community members. Members of the community created birds, animals, and stylized images relating to the canyon and Arizona ecosystems. Reference to petroglyphs, fossilized trilobites, and other natural forms can be discovered by the viewer within the mosaic river. During installation local businessmen and women, students, and artists of all ages brainstormed and worked side-by-side with the artists as they contributed unique and meaningful pieces for the overall mosaic.