Stay Human - CODAworx

Stay Human

Submitted by Folwell Studios, LLC

Client: Center of Recreational Excellence, Hobbs, NM

Location: Hobbs, NM, United States

Completion date: 2020

Artwork budget: $240,000

Project Team

provided percussive elements: Cajon drums and Emperer Chimes

Kris Cullum

Percussion Play


Gail Folwell

Folwell Studios


Stay Human, Bronze and Aluminum. Public Art Commission for the City of Hobbs, NM. 14′ x 50′ x 2′

An Art in Public Places commission for the Center for Recreational Excellence in Hobbs, New Mexico. Stay Human is an interactive centerpiece in the newly renovated facility that celebrates life, music, community, and the uniqueness of human expression. The innovative installation incorporates various chime and drum fixtures in addition to rotating components that allow the life size bronze dancers and art participants to envision their own personal celebration. The combination of spinning sculptures and percussive elements create a dynamic site-specific interactive installation created from truly lasting materials.


It was important to incorporate an interactive art piece as a centerpiece for the city's newly renovated facility, which encourages physical activity, fitness, and engagement with outdoor recreational pursuits. It was also important that the piece be relatable to the residents of Hobbs. By virtue of abstraction, the dancing figures are non-specific when it comes to race, creed or gender and so appeal delightfully to all. In a space where sport can be favored, it was an inclusive choice to focus the work on the joyous recreational pursuits of music and dancing.


The desire was for a piece that was not specific to a sport, but rather appealed to both young and old, and didn't exclude anyone on the basis of ability. The brief called for a human-centric work that was inviting, engaging people of all ages and abilities to create music and experience joy.
The work presented here illustrates my ability to communicate ideas, capture the essence of a moment and provoke mental dialog. Victory, laughter, camaraderie, glory, defeat and adrenaline are energies I breathe into and instill in my art. The CORE facility is poised to welcome and engage attendees with an iconic, uplifting and empowering image for everyone to feel. This is my language. I create art from personal experience, calling on the most powerful moments I have experienced with regard to humans and interaction. The collaboration with Percussion Play gave the piece its musical quality and ability to engage users deeply in musical creation alongside the twirling dancer sculptures.