The River - CODAworx

The River

Client: Jacksonville International Airport

Location: Houston, FL, United States

Completion date: 2010

Artwork budget: $250,000

Project Team


Peter Hite

Production Manager

Seth Rose


I created artwork stretching the 500-foot space in the Jacksonville Airport baggage claim. I used a series of six rivers, each represented by international postage stamps on aluminum. I always thought of these stamps as metaphors for the passengers. They come from all over the world, just like the travelers at the airport. Rivers have been an essential part of transportation for humanity since the old days, and I wanted to link that idea to modern air travel. Instead of rivers, we mainly rely on airplanes to connect us.


The primary aim of my artwork in the Jacksonville Airport baggage claim is to connect the past and present forms of transportation while also drawing parallels between the diverse origins of postage stamps and travelers. By showcasing rivers made from international stamps on aluminum, I aimed to visually represent how both rivers and stamps have historically connected distant parts of the world. Embedding this piece in the baggage claim was crucial, not just for its high visibility but also because this location is a convergence point for travelers, much like the confluence of rivers. The integration into the airport's design reinforces the idea that, just as rivers were once significant travel pathways, airports now serve as modern-day hubs, bringing together people and cultures from across the globe.


Creating the artwork was a collaborative effort, reflecting the spirit of unity the piece embodies. Four art assistants played an instrumental role in its creation. The airport engineers were indispensable, ensuring our creation adhered to safety and building codes. Furthermore, collaborating with the architect ensured the artwork harmonized seamlessly with the airport's existing architectural elements. Together, our synergistic approach transformed an idea into a tangible representation of interconnectedness, making it a fitting centerpiece for a place that connects people from all corners of the world.