Isabelle

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Client: Grit Development

Location: Palm Springs, CA, United States

Completion date: 2018

Artwork budget: $235,000

Project Team

Artist

Julian Voss-Andreae

Lighting

Craig Dorety

Director of Operations

Darren Newby

Julian Voss-Andreae, Inc.

Metal fabrication

Louis Lamoreux

Julian Voss-Andreae, Inc.

Gallerist

Christian Hohmann

Hohmann Fine Art

Overview

“Isabelle” is a site-specific work by Julian Voss-Andreae. Created to showcase everything that Palm Springs is known for, she captures the brilliant sun and beautiful colors of the Coachella Valley by day and plays on the glitz and glamour of Palm Springs’ vibrant night life by night, enhanced by an elaborate integrated custom lighting system. A landmark, a meeting point, a photo opportunity – “Isabelle” allows people of all walks of life to come together, create memories, and find their place in the sun.

Goals

The site is at the center of three paths meeting at right angles. The challenge was to create a work that would draw visitors from the main plaza toward the site. The sculpture's gaze is directed along a path that curves into the plaza. When viewed from that direction the piece virtually disappears, enticing the audience to interact playfully. The custom lighting system ensures a strong presence at night as well.

Process

Developer Michael Braun of Grit Palm Springs felt that Voss-Andreae’s vision would be a perfect match for his company’s commitment to art in public spaces and to bring an international caliber of talent to downtown Palm Springs. Christian Hohmann of Hohmann Fine Art, a representative of the artist, made the connection between the developer and the artist and accompanied the project every step on the way. Light artist Craig Dorety created the custom-written software that controls the color lights.

Additional Information

Approaching the sculpture from the main plaza she is almost invisible, materializing in front of the viewer only at closer proximity. This phenomenon of the disappearing angle is reminiscent of a desert mirage and invites viewers to discover the visual complexity of the work as an allegory of the cultural diversity and the multi-faceted community that is Palm Springs.